The term “cutlet” is used to describe a variety of different dishes, although they bear some similarities. Generally, a cutlet is either a thin strip of meat from the ribs or legs of an animal, a ground and breaded piece of meat that is fried, or, in the case of prawns and shrimp, the shelled, decapitated body of the crustacean covered in breadcrumbs and served fried, with only the flesh and tail intact. This recipe is for Russian cutlets, served in the style common in Eastern Europe and much of the former Soviet Union. The Russian word kotleta refers more or less exclusively to pan-fried croquettes of minced meat, and that’s exactly what this recipe aims to deliver. It’s a belly-filling, robust dish that, like most products of Russian culture, is brutally pragmatic and bursting with utilitarian, uncompromising character.You can use either chicken or beef for Russian cutlets, depending on your particular palate and the eating habits of those at your table. Chicken cutlets served in this style tend to be less hearty, and are better suited to warm evenings, while Russian cutlets of beef are ideal for cold winters. Typically, the bread used for cutlets is soaked in milk, garlic, onion and herbs, although it’s not uncommon for rushing Russians to sandwich their cutlet between two slices of bread and eat it like a hamburger. In restaurants, however, where you sit down to consume the meal, it’s far more common for patrons to eat their cutlets with the aforementioned soaked bread or something similar.One of the benefits of Russian cutlets is that, thanks to the breading of the minced meat, they retain their moisture when refrigerated. In the cold Arctic regions of Russia, it’s standard practice to make more cutlets than you’ll consume and refrigerate some of the cutlets. They withstand refrigeration for long periods of time (although it should be noted that chicken cutlets expire earlier than beef) and are just as delicious when re-fried as when they’re fresh. Don’t microwave your frozen cutlets, as this will dry them out and even risks burning the crust. They’ll also lose significant volume to microwave-induced evaporation, and nobody wants to eat a dry, tiny Russian cutlet. Always pan fry your refrigerated or frozen cutlets, as this allows them to retain their size and texture without too many issues.
Don’t forget to remove the crust from your bread, as leaving it on will leave you with a Russian cutlet covered in unsavory lumps. You should always mix your bread mixture by hand to ensure that you have a well-blended, thick mixture that isn’t too watery or thin. You want the coating on your cutlets to be thick and juicy, not thin or dry. Be sure to rid your mixture of as much milk as possible, as it’s meant to moisten the bread mixture, not saturate it.
You can serve your Russian cutlets with a side of potatoes, or pasta if you’re feeling like reducing the carbohydrate and starch content of this meal. Pan-fried or mashed potatoes are best, but you can serve the potatoes any way you like.
RUSSIAN CUTLETS RECIPE
- Ground chicken meat- 700 gm
- Ground beef meat- 700 gm
- Raw potatoes- 3
- Onion-1 large
- Garlic cloves- 5-6
- Egg- 1
- Fresh dill herbs( chopped)- 4 tbsp
- Fresh red chili- 1 ( chopped)
- Any Meat seasonings- To Taste
- Salt- To Taste
- White pepper - 1 tbsp
- Bay leaves- 3
- Bread Crumbs- 200-300 gm ( or all purpose flour)
- Canola Oil-250 ml
- Peel the potatoes and dice them.
- Cut chicken fillet and beef into small pieces.
- Process all the ingredients( potatoes, onion, garlic cloves, chicken meat and beef meat) in your meat grinder.
- Add seasonings, salt, white/black pepper , lightly beaten egg, fresh dill herbs and chopped red chili. Combine well.
- Form small cutlets ( patties). Take a medium bowl, fill with bread crumbs. Coat the cutlets in bread crumbs/flour.
- Heat some oil in a large pan, transfer the cutlets in hot oil and fry until golden brown. Repeat the procedure with the remaining cutlets.
- Take a large saucepan that will accommodate all the cutlets. Place them into this saucepan, add 1 cup of water and bay leaves, cover and cook on slow heat 15-20 minutes.