There are some recipes that you really don’t want to change the way you make it. It is all about being in the comfort zone, isn’t it? I learned to make cutlets from umma, and I have been making them that way for a long time now. It’s just not me, even my sister sticks to that recipe, because it is what works and is so much loved. Umma would make such huge batches every Eid and it would literally disappear in seconds. My girls love it a lot and they are devoured as soon as one batch gets out of the hot oil. We have seen others snort because the onion, ginger and chilli are added raw into the chicken and potato, but at the end of it, there would be no complaints and the plate would come back empty. All the cutlet recipes already on the blog follow the same method. But this one is totally different and it happened due to a reason…
Before I go on about the story, this is the last post in the 3 back-to-back chai time snacks for this week, after the Mutta Porichath and Kheema Toasties. OK, so these meat cutlets happened for a reason. My best friend, who has been bearing me (or I have been bearing her! ;)) since grade 7, asked me to make some cutlets for her. I made my usual recipe, packed them in cling film and into a disposable aluminium pack, and handed over it to her to freeze and fry whenever convenient. After a couple of days, she messaged me saying that she didn’t like my cutlets. To say the truth, I felt very hurt. Even though I am quite receptive to negative feedback, it always starts like a punch in my heart, and then in a few seconds, I start thinking more logically from the other person’s perspective.
It made me realize one thing – that we all have our fixed notions, which we find it hard to break unless somebody breaks it for us. You might be thinking why I state something so serious in a case as simple as a cutlet, but sometimes you learn lessons through matters you feel are unimportant. It was around the same time Fami was totally going gaga over her cutlet recipe and I was really intrigued by it mainly because it had a sizzling of fennel seeds, something that I have never tried in mine. Moreover, it had a more accepted sauteed mixture, so I had to try it when I landed up with some fresh beef cubes.
This batch didn’t take time to disappear off the pan. I actually made it for lunch once. We like to have our cutlets like sandwich, in between two big slices of bread, slathered with some cheese or mayonnaise, some lettuce leaves, slices of cucumber and tomato, shredded cutlet so that we can fit maximum in there… Oh, how amazing that tastes! OK, coming back to the scene, so basically I wanted these to be eaten as sandwiches by the folks but they didn’t even bother with the bread. They drizzled ketchup on top of the hot cutlets and chomped on the salad along with it, and it was gone. It was absolutely delicious! The flavor of fennel thoroughly comes through as you bite into the cutlet. I don’t know if I mentioned before, but fennel was one of the spices I totally hated while growing up. But now, my taste buds have surely changed to appreciate the flavor of this interesting spice. 🙂 Off to this delicious recipe, thanks for Fami for sharing!
- 350 gm boneless beef/ mutton
- ¼ tsp turmeric
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 250 gm potato, boiled and mashed
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tsp fennel seed
- 2 green chillies, minced
- 1 sprig curry leaves minced
- 1 onion, minced
- 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
- 2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves (optional)
- ¼ tsp garam masala powder
- Salt to taste
- 2 egg whites, whisked
- Bread crumbs made of 3 slices of big bread
- Wash and drain the beef cubes. In a pressure cooker, add the turmeric and black pepper with salt and cook till done. In case stock is there, dry the stock till coated on the meat. Allow to cool.
- Pulse the meat in the grinder till done.
- In a large saucepan, heat oil. Splutter the fennel seeds.
- Add the chillies and curry leaves and saute for a minute.
- Add the onion and saute till wilted. Add the ginger garlic paste and saute for a minute.
- Add the mashed potato and ground beef and give a good mix. Adjust seasoning at this point. Add the garam masala. Allow to cook for a couple of minutes, while you fold it in well. Switch off and allow to cool.
- Divide into 9 or 10 cutelts and set aside. Dip into the egg whites sealing all the edges well, and then into the bread crumbs, coating sparingly.
- Heat oil in a frying pan till sizzling hot. When a drop of the bread crumb is dropped, it will fry and push up.
- Add the cutlets and fry both sides till golden brown. Drain on a kitchen towel. Enjoy warm.