Polish pork schnitzel

Polish pork schnitzel

Kotlet schabowy

Borsch, Vodka and Tears
Bonnie Savage

It seems that everywhere in the world where there’s bread, there’s some kind of schnitzel. Even some countries that don’t really have bread, like Japan, have schnitzel. When my Jewish friend Eden goes to visit his Hungarian grandma, she invariably grabs his cheeks and says, ‘You look skinny, you want schnitzel?’ This Polish version, made with pork loin, may not feature high on the Jewish grandmother menu, but the comfort it brings to homesick Polish boys is just the same. It should be served with mash.


Quantity Ingredient
1 teaspoon butter
1 teaspoon plain flour, plus extra for crumbing
1 litre homemade brown stock, (see note)
or 1 litre Polish soup stock
1 teaspoon finely diced polish dill cucumber pickles
3 teaspoons finely diced fresh cucumber
3 teaspoons finely diced red capsicum
3 teaspoons finely diced red onion
600g pork loin, trimmed
1 egg, lightly beaten
dried breadcrumbs, for crumbing
vegetable oil, or clarified butter, for frying


  1. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and stir constantly until it starts to bubble and change colour, about 5 minutes. Gradually add the stock, stirring well after each addition so that no lumps form. When all the stock has been added, bring the mixture to a simmer and reduce the liquid, scraping the base of the saucepan occasionally until you have about 250 ml of sauce. Remove from the heat and keep warm.
  2. To make a salsa, mix together the pickles, cucumber, capsicum and onion in a bowl. Set aside.
  3. Cut the pork loin into eight even-sized pieces across the grain. Put each piece between double layers of plastic wrap and use a meat mallet to beat them out until they are about 5 mm thick all over.
  4. Put the extra flour, the egg and the breadcrumbs in separate bowls and season the flour well with salt and pepper. Dredge each piece of pork first in the flour, shaking off any excess, then dip it in the egg and then toss it in the breadcrumbs to coat evenly on both sides. Repeat with the remaining pork until all the schnitzels are coated.
  5. Heat a little oil in a large frying pan over medium– high heat until it runs like water across the pan. Add as many schnitzels as will fit in a single layer and cook them until golden on both sides, about 1 minute on each side.
  6. Serve the schnitzels immediately with a sprinkling of the capsicum salsa on top, and with mash and braised red cabbage. Drizzle 60 ml of the sauce around the plate.


  • To make brown stock, follow the recipe for Polish soup stock, but substitute 1 kg of veal, beef or pork bones or a mixture of the three for the beef and chicken. You can get these from any butcher. Skip the step where you bring the bones to a boil and drain them immediately. Instead, preheat the oven to 210°C, put the bones in a roasting pan or two, being sure not to overcrowd them and place them in the oven. After 15 minutes they should have started to brown, turn them over and cook for 5 minutes, then reduce the heat to 180°C. Cook the bones for a further 20–30 minutes, turning them over halfway until the meat that is stuck to them is a deep brown colour. Remove from the pan and allow to cool.

    Tip any excess fat out of the roasting pan and heat the pan over high heat until it starts to sizzle, then add about 125 ml water and loosen the stuff that’s stuck to the base of the pan with a wooden spoon. Transfer to a bowl to add to the stock with the vegetables later on. You may need to add more water to help you do this bit.

    Continue to make the stock according to the directions for Polish soup stock, but let it simmer for 8–12 hours, adding water if it starts to dry out. If you have to, you can use store-bought stock, but making this stock from scratch is well worth the effort.
Vodka and Tears
Back to top
    No results found
    No more results
      No results found
      No more results
        No results found
        No more results
          No results found
          No more results
            No results found
            No more results
              No results found
              No more results
              Please start typing to begin your search
              We're sorry but we had trouble running your search. Please try again