DENVER, CO - JANUARY 3 : Fresh chicken cutlets on January 3 , 2018 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Amy Brothers/ The Denver Post)
The Unique Cutlet-Breading Technique That Challenges Everything You Thought You Knew
By Heidi Chaya
Breadcrumbs are handy for utilizing stale bread and crackers, but they're less forgiving than batter, which at least has the decency to cover your food evenly after dipping. Fortunately, a Bolivian dish called silpancho will change the way you look at breading cutlets.
Silpancho involves a very thinly rolled-out, breaded cutlet, but what sets it apart is that many chefs fry it without dipping it in egg first. Instead, it's thoroughly smushed into a bowl of breadcrumbs before hitting the hot oil, creating a mess-free, perfectly crisped, and lightly coated piece of meat.
You can also apply this technique to lean ground meat, such as beef, by making golf ball-sized orbs and rolling them in seasoned breadcrumbs. From there, flatten the meat out with a rolling pin, flip to repeat the coating, and roll until you have a cutlet with the thickness of a crepe.
This method works well despite the absence of egg or flour because it creates a uniform piece of meat. By doing this, you never have to worry about errant batter chunks like you would on pieces of fried chicken or floppy, odd-sized vegetables.