a peek inside the fishbowl

20 Apr, 2011

Tomkins’ Toastee Meat Snax™

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Recipes and Food

a.k.a. a recipe for schnitzel
a.k.a. how to assemble and make your own breaded pork cutlets

Sorry to keep making a spectacle of myself in the toasted meat department but I am compelled to illustrate that it is possible to have toaster-ready* meat snacks on hand if you so desire, and you can make them yourself and not have to rely on something that has been sold to you and/or you have dug up in the frozen food aisle. 

If I can convince ONE PERSON not to buy toaster meat I will consider this post A JOB WELL DONE.

In case it’s not perfectly clear, this is a quickie how-to-make breaded cutlets. :) You can use pork, turkey, or chicken. I used pork this time around, but it is VERY good with turkey and I suggest you try it.

* And by “toaster ready” I really mean toaster oven, and if this strikes you as a major inconvenience, well, ok then.

I recommend eating Tomkins’ Toastee Meat Snax™ for dinner, not necessarily as an afterschool snack as Big Food would lead you to believe. But hey, whatever floats your boat.

Tomkins’ Toastee Meat Snax™

You will need:

  • meat of choice (I used pork)
  • bread of choice (I used the heels of rye and multigrain loaves I had kicking around)
  • seasoning of choice
  • two or three eggs
  • a splash of milk
  • oil for frying (I use canola or peanut oil)

First, the breading. I sometimes use ordinary pre-made breadcrumbs, but knowing that my grandmother would be appalled I do try to make my own using multigrain bread. In this case I used up some not-so-fresh rye bread and the heels of a loaf of multigrain (because no one eats those anyway).

DIY breadcrumbs

You can save yourself a few minutes by doing this part ahead of time and storing it in the fridge.

Tear the bread into chunks and pulse it in your food processor until, it has, um, turned into breadcrumbs.

Goodbye bread, see you on the other side

See how pretty it is?

Baby breadcrumbs

Dig into your spice rack. Hopefully it is a bit more organized than mine.

Spice mess

And mix in a bunch of spices that suit you. Be generous (because that’s a lot of bread we just whirled up).

spices

Consider adding some dried basil, oregano, garlic powder … really, it’s up to you. You are the master of your own schnitzel!

Speaking of which, have you noticed that raw meat does not photograph very well?

raw

Do note: Tomkins’ Toastee Meat Snax™ are even better if you pound the crap out of them beforehand with a meat tenderizer (which also does wonders for stress levels btw). But these seemed thinnish so I skipped that step.

So het your eggs ready. Add a splash of milk.

Eggy

Get your workstation ready, because there’s an order to breading.

kitchen setup

First you coat the cutlet in flour:

flouring

Then take ‘er for a dip in the egg:

egg bath

Shake off the extra (I see I have an Achilles heel happening there):

dipping

And coat in your prepared breadcrumbs. Don’t lose your meat in there:

still naked underneath those crumbs

Please note – you cannot reuse the breadcrumbs if you’ve been rolling raw meat in them. It’s best to separate what you need and add more if you need to. Are you still with me?

Fry your Tomkins’ Toastee Meat Snax™ in a bit of hot oil – a few minutes per side – until they are cooked through.

toasty meats!

Let them rest on a plate you’ve lined with paper towel (to absorb some of the oil) while you cook up the rest. We served these with corn, green salad, and sweet potato fries.

Eat it hot, or save it for the next day. You can even refrigerate them for reheating in toaster oven for convenient after school snacking! They are TOASTEEEEE MMmmmmmeat! ;)

All kidding aside, what do you think? Is this doable where you are? Or are you still tempted to buy frozen meat snacks that are toaster-ready?


13 Responses to "Tomkins’ Toastee Meat Snax™"

1 | Lori

April 20th, 2011 at 11:37 am

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You’re hilarious!! In all seriousness, schnitzel is perhaps one of the quickest, easiest, and most delicious things that make a regular appearance in our house.

Oh, and I promise to NEVER buy frozen, toaster meat snacks!

2 | Chantal

April 20th, 2011 at 11:41 am

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I agree. I would never buy that product. Why? It makes no sense. I have my own recipe for schnitzel (which is similar to yours) and my boys love it.

My 9yo did see the toaster meat (I think it was chicken though) at the store and asked me to buy it. I explained why I wouldn’t and he understood. :)

3 | Javamom

April 20th, 2011 at 12:26 pm

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I make my Schnitzel almost exactly the same way. I always make extra and put the rest in the freezer for a quick hearty sandwich on one of those days when it’s so easy to just pop that into the mike and heat up.

4 | Alyssa

April 20th, 2011 at 12:35 pm

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Again, “Toasty Meat”? EW! But what you have demonstrated: totally doable and looks delicious! Love this :)

5 | DaniGirl

April 20th, 2011 at 1:08 pm

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I’m so glad you clarified the toaster/toaster oven thing. I know it’s been a long week and my brain has not been working on all cylinders, but for the whole toaster meet snax thing, I have been picturing meat in my toaster, which was the most perplexing part of the whole conversation. Toaster *oven* — gotcha!

BTW, this is also yummy if you use milk with a drop or two of vinegar to make buttermilk in lieu of the eggs, and bake for 15 to 20 mins instead of frying. That’s how we do ours. For a super-flavour-burst, use caesar dressing instead of the buttermilk!

6 | andrea

April 20th, 2011 at 1:42 pm

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Dani – Yes, reheating these are best suited for toaster ovens. Not sure about the original meat snacks, as they have probably been specially designed for handy toaster use. :)

Good point about oven baking by the way! For some reason I always associate breaded pork with frying! Not sure why, perhaps it’s just because I grew up with it this way. I regularly oven bake home-breaded chicken / chicken fingers and it is great. Healthier this way too.

7 | Alicia

April 20th, 2011 at 2:09 pm

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This is awesome – I was waiting for a recipe!

8 | andrea

April 20th, 2011 at 2:17 pm

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Alicia – I’m glad to hear it! Let me know how it works out for you!

9 | Josée

April 20th, 2011 at 7:30 pm

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I don’t know if it’s because I’m French-Canadian, but we never had Schnitzel when I was a kid. This looks delicious, and it’s timely since I’m getting tired of the same old baked chicken. Thanks for the great idea!

10 | Sarah (mrsgryphon)

April 20th, 2011 at 8:44 pm

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We’ve been cooking our schnitzel lately in our panini press – just put them between some parchment paper and press! Quick and no frying :)

11 | Hilary

April 21st, 2011 at 8:09 am

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Tee hee.

You should see the schnitzel in Vienna. It covers the whole plate and then some! I could only eat a quarter of mine.

I do my own chicken nuggets this way but I often drizzle with a little olive oil at the end and then bake them. The bit of oil lends some of that golden crunchiness you miss from not frying it.

12 | Ginger

April 21st, 2011 at 9:33 am

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So I am glad you did this because I couldn’t envision what Toastee Meat Snax might actually be. We always cook our chicken this way…except we put it in the oven because I am not one for frying. I am just not very good at it and I figure baking is better anyway. :)

13 | Kim

April 21st, 2011 at 2:59 pm

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Those look scrumptious and very doable! Thanks for posting the recipe and photos. It really proves just how easy a little bit of cooking can be.
We use a recipe for breaded chicken thighs that are baked in the big oven. I cook extra and pop them (2or4) in a bag and store them in the freezer to re-heat in the toaster oven as needed.

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our two daughters Emma (18) and Sarah (16). I am the managing editor of our community newspaper, the Kitchissippi Times. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger, and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999... which makes me either a total dinosaur or a veteran, I'm not sure which! The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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