Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Schnitz and Giggles

Rodrigo R. Rodarte
Moishe House LA

I recently came up with a new schnitzel recipe off the cuff that I thought came out nicely and I wanted to share it. As part of our own take on celebrating the high holidays, we were all in a cabin in the woods (not like the movie) for the Saturday night in between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur for some reflecting and rejuvenation. The four of us and ten of our community members were having an amazing and very relaxing time just talking, joking, smoking hookah, thinking back on the previous year and just being away from the city for a night. As evening approached, dinner became the only thing we were able to reflect on, so in keeping with tradition in our house, the boys laced up our aprons and got to work. Jon wore the main chef hat, prepping a London broil and some sides, and I took on chicken duty for the non-red-meat-eaters. With only the chicken breasts, the limited spice rack of the cabin and the snacks we brought for our hike the next day, my options were limited and I had nothing planned. There were some requests for schnitzel but no breadcrumbs. I decided to make it anyway. We had some chips and pretzels open from snack time, so I took them both, smashed them into a million pieces, toasted up a piece of wheat bread, crumbled it in the mix, and threw in some spices and garlic. Using the traditional egg coating and a super hot oiled up pan, I breaded and fried the chicken like normal. As we sat to enjoy the tremendous meal before us in the surreally tranquil atmosphere of the cabin and the woods, we all shared words of appreciation for the great food, for the opportunity to be up there and for the time to get away from life for 24 hours. We chowed hard, laughed, drank and I felt truly blessed to be a part of all of it. To my surprise, the schnitzel played a starring role in the meal, the reviews were rave and bellies were filled. The next day as part of our plan for the weekend, we hiked up a mountain and separated from one another for individual reflection. Sitting by myself on top of a rock it occurred to me that despite all our efforts to plan the perfect program, the perfect retreat, the perfect meal, and many other things, it is often the unexpected that turns out best, the unplanned that we truly remember and appreciate. As I enter another Jewish year with more events and Moishe House memories to come, I am more than ever thankful for the opportunity to share the surprises and happy accidents of life with my wonderful roommates, friends, family and community. 


1 cup crushed pretzels
1 cup crushed, flavored chips of choice
1 super toasted, crumbled up slice of bread
1tsp Salt
1tsp pepper
1 clove garlic, ultra minced
2 lbs thin sliced chicken boobs
2 eggs
1/4 cup soy milk or almond milk

Mix thoroughly the crushed ingredients, salt, pepper and garlic in a wide, shallow bowl or dish.

Beat eggs with soy milk.

Pound chicken nice and flat (or slice thin).

heat generous serving of oil in large skillet to medium-high eat.

Dip chicken in egg mix, roll in dry mix, fry thoroughly on each side until both sides are crispy and brown

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