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Thursday, March 26, 2009

Fast Comfort Food: Beef Schnitzel with Pesto Potatoes & Carrots

There are times when we crave comfort food. Okay, crave is a slight understatement. Let me try again.

There are times when we NEED comfort food. During these times we really don’t want anything or anyone to stand in our way. The problem is that when we think of comfort food, this usually refers to slow cooked stews and items roasted in the oven for hours on end. But of course, the last thing we need is to spend hours in kitchen to stress ourselves out even more. So unless we have someone to cook for us when we are feeling down, how are we going to make this happen? Comfort food is laborious cooking. Who has the time or patience for that?

Here’s an idea. With absolutely no advance preparation needed, you can make the following dinner and be completely satisfied with the result. Okay, it’s not a hearty stew or big fat roast coming out of the oven, but it is fast and easy and I promise, it will leave you completely satisfied and stress free!

Don’t believe me? Go ahead! Try!

Beef Schnitzel with Pesto Potatoes & Carrots
Beef Schnitzel
Serves 4
375 grams boneless beef, cut into 4 pieces and pounded thin (I used topside which worked really well, but you could also use sirloin or ribeye

Mixed in one large bowl or shallow pan:
1 cup bread crumbs

1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tbsp Herbes de Provence

Mixed in another large bowl or shallow pan:
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper

Butter and Oil for pan

Dip one piece of beef into the egg mixture, then into the crumb mixture, being sure to coat both sides with bread crumbs. Then, place back into the egg mixture to moisten both sides, then again into the crumb mixture to create a thick crust. Repeat with other 3 pieces of beef.
Heat a pan on medium high heat and add about 1 tbsp of butter and 1 tbsp of oil. Once the butter is melted, add the crusted beef, being sure not to over crowd the pan (you may need to work in batches depending on the size of your pan). Leave the beef without touching for about 3-4 minutes, or until the crust is browned. Flip over and cook for the same amount of time on the other side. Once both sides are browned, remove from pan. Repeat with remaining beef. Serve warm with Dijon Mustard and Pesto Potatoes and Carrots.

Pesto Potatoes & Carrots
Serves 4

4 large potatoes, cut into large chunks
4 large carrots, cut into large chunks
½ cup of Pesto (either in a jar or freshly made)

Place the potatoes and the carrots into a microwave proof bowl. Cover and place in the microwave on high for between 5-10 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender. Toss the potatoes and carrots in the pesto, season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve along side the beef schnitzel.

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