Of all the cooking cultures that have put their own spin on schnitzel, this Israeli-inspired riff might be my favorite. No wonder; it comes from a new cookbook called “Sababa” (Avery), whose Tel Aviv-based author, Adeena Sussman, is a whiz at developing and adapting recipes with a modern sensibility.
Like kosher cooks in Israel have done for decades, she pan-fries the pounded-thin cutlets in oil instead of butter, and uses chicken instead of the classic Austrian call for veal. What makes Sussman’s recipe particularly appealing for a crunch fan like me is its seasoned blend of panko and roasted sesame seeds. The coating stays in place, thanks to a brief respite before the chicken hits the pan, and it reaches a golden brown apogee every time, right on cue, graced with the nutty goodness that sesame delivers.
This is not a fry to be afraid of, because a modest amount of oil is needed. From my measured testing, just a few tablespoons are actually absorbed. This is non-greasy schnitzel, folks!
You can buy chicken thighs that are already boned and skinless or use the bone-in, skin-on variety. It takes about 5 minutes to prep them, with the added bonus of reserving the bones for homemade stock and the skin for savory gribenes.