Chicken schnitzels, splendid with seeds, golden with turmeric
It’s not often the Saucy Dressings’ Chief Taster is openly fulsome in his praise – his preferred tactic is to constantly raise the bar. But this dish of chicken schnitzels evoked many enthusiastic compliments.
He was particularly impressed by the way the coating helps to keep the chicken moist – if necessary it can be kept waiting for over an hour without going dry. However – it doesn’t warm up well the following day, the seeds seem to lose their flavour. If you have any left, cut it into bite sized pieces and throw them into a salad generous with dressing.
It does, however, need a sauce; or a liquidy vegetable, or a salad sloppy with vinaigrette. It goes very well, for example, with Roasted Baby Plum Tomatoes with a Lemon-thyme Yoghurt which combines both juicy vegetable and sauce. Or with Juicy, Smoked Spanish Sweet and Sour Red Peppers. Or with spinach anointed with lots of butter and nutmeg.
Recipe for chicken schnitzels, splendid with seeds, golden with turmeric
- 450g/1 lb flat chicken fillets
- 4 tbsps plain flour
- 2 eggs
- 8 tbsps panko breadcrumbs
- 5 tbsps white sesame seeds
- 2 tbsps black sesame seeds
- 4 tbsps sunflower seeds
- 1 tbsp coriander seeds
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- generous pinch of Urfa pepper flakes
- sunflower oil – quantity dependent on the diameter of the frying pan, approximately 120 ml/½ cup
- 1 lemon
- smoked salt, freshly ground black pepper
- sauce – see comments above* – try a Yoghurt and Tahini Sauce; or the Lemon-thyme Yoghurt Sauce which is part of this recipe.
- Warm the plates, and an extra, larger one for the chicken fillets.
- Pour enough oil into a medium frying pan (it’s better to do this in batches) to cover the surface and make it a couple of cm/½” thick. Get it warming gently.
- Put the flour into a small bowl (just large enough for about half the chicken fillets and season it – pinch of salt, a few grinds of pepper.
- In another small bowl beat the eggs.
- Roughly crush the coriander seeds in a pestle and mortar.
- In the third bowl (the largest of all) put the breadcrumbs, all the seeds, the turmeric and a generous pinch of Urfa pepper flakes.
- Cut, if necessary, the chicken fillets into traditional fish finger-lengths, and about double fish finger widths.
- Ratchet up the heat to get the oil just smoking. Place the seed bowl nearest the frying pan, then the beaten egg bowl, then the seasoned flour, then the pile of chicken fillets.
- Put about half of the fillets into the flour, and muddle to coat lightly. Take one fillet and dip into the egg, then the seed mix, and on into the sizzling oil. Repeat to fill the frying pan, turn, and as soon as both sides of a fillet are golden, take out and put on the large, warmed platter on a double thickness of kitchen paper.
- Keep going until you have fried the lot.
- Serve with quarters of lemon.