Argentina has a couple of actual “national dishes,” (Asado and Locro) but an unofficial dish that may be more popular than either is Milanesa, which is what I’ll be making today.
Milanesa is available in Argentina in a variety of styles, I will be preparing two of the most popular ones, Milanesa a Caballo (Milanesa “on horseback”) and Milanesa a la Napolitana (Neapolitan style). It’s pure comfort food and I can only imagine phenomenal for hangovers.
For those wishing to skip to the recipes, I have adapted the Milanesa a Caballo from Bodega Argentina and the Milanesa a la Napolitana from From Argentina With Love.
For a richer flavor, a 2-4 hour refrigeration period is ideal but not mandatory. It’s hard to screw up fried meat at the end of the day.
You’ll need a frying pan and baking dish for this prep.
LET’S DO THIS:
- 16-20 ounces of lean steak, cut into 4 pieces, pounded to thin/tenderized
- 6-7 eggs (4 for frying, 2-3 for the batter)
- 1 cup breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons of fresh parsley, chopped (dry will do as well)
- salt and pepper to taste
- 4-6 slices of prosciutto (ham or capocollo can also be used, if you do not eat pork bresaola is a good alternative)
- 1/2 cup tomato sauce
- 1 cup fresh mozzarella cheese (either shredded or thinly sliced)
- 2 pressed cloves of garlic
- about 1/2 cup oil for frying – you’ll want something that can hold a pretty high temp like avocado, safflower, etc.
Total prep time for me was about 40 minutes (17:40 to 18:20). Your time may vary.
Here’s what you’re going to do:
- Mix the the batter by combining the two batter eggs, garlic, parsley, salt, and pepper in a bowl
- Dip the meat one at a time in the egg mix, then coat in breadcrumbs
- If you are chilling the meat, place on a plate with wax or parchment paper between each steak and refrigerate 2-4 hours
- Turn your oven on to broil
- Heat the oil to a medium-high heat. Cook the steaks one at a time so they are golden on each side, CAUTION the oil will bubble when placing the cold steak into the hot oil
- For the two Napolitana Milanesa, take two of the fried steaks and place in the baking dish. Place the prosciutto, tomato sauce, and mozzarella cheese on top and broil to golden/bubbly on the cheese
- For the two Milanesa a Caballo, fry four eggs to desired doneness (runny is most typical) and place two atop each steak
That’s it! Less the chilling period total prep and cook is about 1 hour, 20 minutes (17:40 to 18:20, then 21:10 to 21:30).