How to make steak milanesa: Recipe from Argentina
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Recipe: Milanesa Steak
In Buenos Aires, every corner has a cafe where you can order a milanesa steak sandwich (or steak milanese). It is a thin steak (and Argentina knows a thing or two about steak) breaded in garlic, salt, and bread crumbs. It is broiled well-done and served on French bread. In Mexico these sandwiches are called Torta de Milanesa, but in Argentina and Uruguay they are simply Milanesa. I learned how to cook milanesa steak from a dear old woman who literally took me by the hand and showed me how it is done.
To remake this creation in North America you will need:
Thinly cut steak (my grocery store sells a cut called sandwich steak which works perfectly)
Bread crumbs (pre-seasoned or plain)
Salt (large grain)
1 Tb. minced garlic
Bollilo rolls (these are Meixcan-style rolls)
Lay your steak out on your preparation surface. If it is not as thin as you would like it for your sandwich you can take to it with a meat tenderizer. It should be about 1/8 of an inch when you begin.
On a plate stir together bread crumbs and minced garlic.
Sprinkle the steak with large-grain salt. Then drag the steak through a beaten egg. Lay the steak on the bread crumbs, Cover it with crumbs, pat, flip, cover, pat, flip, until the steak has a nice coating of crumbs and garlic. Repeat for as many steaks as you have to cook.
Lay the steaks gently on a greased pan. Cook at 425 for 5 min. The steak should cook quickly. As always make sure the steak has reached an appropriate internal temperature.
While the steak cooks, slice open your Bolillo rolls (or whatever bread you have chosen). A milanesa completa usually comes with lettuce, tomato, mayonnaise, a fried egg, and sometimes ham. It tastes great all by itself.
Put the steak on the roll and enjoy.
I have also made this to accompany pasta, and it tastes great atop spaghetti.
Torta de Milanesa de Res Recipe
Another way to prepare a Milanesa is to serve it up Mexican style. A Mexican torta de milanesa uses the meat prepared exactly as above. It is topped with lettuce, tomato, guacamole, and sliced canned jalapeños. The combination of flavors and textures on this sandwich make it undeniably delicious. Afraid of jalapeños? You can replace them with canned red peppers.
For a chipotle style torta, replace the jalapeños with the adobo sauce from a can of chiptole peppers in adobo. For an extra spicy chipotle flavor use the whole pepper on your sandwich.
I recently made milanesa with venison steaks my friend gave me. Venison steaks can be tenderized until they are thin. Then follow the recipe above to make them in to something like a healthy country fried steak. Note that venison is leaner than beef and often cooks faster, so keep a close eye on it as it cooks.
A similar preparation as the one above could also be used with chicken.
Start with a chicken breast. Split the breast so it becomes one thin piece. Coat the breast with the mixture described above. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on it. Cook using the same methods as above.
Kinds of Torta de Milanesa
In South America, you can find all kinds of variations on a classic milanesa. Here are some of the most popular:
Napolitana: This comes with mozzarella, tomato, and ham.
Completa: Completa is the granddaddy of them all. There is a different definition of what comes on a completa, but it almost always includes a fried egg and ham. It may also have lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise.
Canadiense: As the name suggests, this one comes with Canadian bacon instead of the traditional ham.