Jaegerschnitzel (Jägerschnitzel) is a traditional German dish, most commonly made with pork or veal cutlets (schnitzels) today. Historically, they were made with wild boar or venison (jäger means “hunter” in German) and paired with wild mushrooms. Today, its accompanying mushroom gravy is what separates Jaegerschnitzel from its more commonly-known (and gravy-less) counterpart, Wiener Schnitzel. Fun fact: it’s believed that Chicken Fried Steak originated from this dish, when German and Austrian immigrants brought it to Texas during the 1800s.
Making this dish within a Paleo template is easy, as it only requires a different type of flour. A combination of potato starch and arrowroot flour works best, but if you have only one flour on hand it still turns out pretty well. Tapioca starch can also be used in a pinch.
2 pork tenderloins (~1 lb each)
1/4 cup each potato and arrowroot starches
1/2 tbsp salt
1 tsp each black pepper and paprika
1/4 cup (4 tbsp) lard (or coconut oil)
for the gravy:
1 tbsp butter (or coconut oil)
1/2 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
10oz white or button mushrooms, quartered
2 tbsp white rice flour (coconut flour okay)
2 cups beef broth
1/4 tsp dried thyme
2 tbsp heavy cream (sub coconut milk if dairy-free)
salt and pepper to taste
Pork tenderloins gross me out a little. Ever since seeing Prometheus, all I can picture are those worm monsters. Okay, let’s move on.
I recommend cutting up your mushrooms, onion, and garlic ahead of time so you can transition from schnitzel to gravy seamlessly.
Diagonally slice the tenderloins into 1/2″ thick cutlets. They don’t have to be beautiful.
Place a cutlet in a large resealable bag, then gently pound with a meat tenderizer until it’s about 1/4″ thick.
Continue pounding the rest of your cutlets, then set aside.
Warm the lard or oil in a skillet on med/high heat, and preheat your oven to 170F.
In a large, shallow bowl, combine the potato starch, arrowroot starch, salt, pepper, and paprika. Lightly bread a few cutlets, then add them to the oil. Fry for 2 minutes, then turn, and fry for 2 more minutes.
Place the finished schnitzels on a baking sheet that’s lined with a wire rack, then keep them in the oven to stay warm while you fry the rest of the schnitzels. Once you’re done, leave all of the cooked cutlets in the oven while you make your gravy.
Spoon 2 tbsp of the lard or oil you used to fry the schnitzels into a separate skillet (or remove all but 2 tbsp of oil from the skillet you used to fry the cutlets), and add 1 tbsp butter. Warm on medium heat, then add the garlic. Sauté until aromatic, about 30 seconds, then add the onion. Sauté the onion until it is softened, about 5 minutes.
Add the mushrooms and sauté until they start to release their liquid, about 4 minutes, stirring often.
Stir in the rice flour, and toast until the rice flour starts to darken and smell slightly nutty, about 1 minute. It’ll be dry and clumpy at this point, which is fine.
Stir in the beef broth and thyme, and simmer until the gravy thickens, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the cream, then add salt and pepper to taste. Pour the gravy over the schnitzel and go to town. This dish goes best with mashed potatoes and Blaukraut (German Red Cabbage).