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I am trying to do a pan-fried schnitzel with chicken breast coated in a mix of eggs, salt, pepper, some ketchup, a bit of olive-oil and sweet paprika.
Once I coat the chicken in the egg mix, I try to cover it with panko bread, but for some reason it doesn't stick and leaves tiny holes once it's pan-fried.
Somebody says I should coat the chicken with flour prior to the egg, but I'm not convinced that would do the trick.

Does anyone care to explain what to do?

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Panko won't stick to chicken (too dry), but will stick to egg. Egg won't stick to chicken (too smooth and non-absorbant), but will stick to flour. Flour will stick to chicken. Dredge first through flour, then through (well beaten) egg, then through panko. It's a tricky combination, but if you do it right the results are excellent. Any dry spices you want to put in can go in the flour. While I don't know for sure, I would certainly wouldn't include any oils in the coating, as none of flour/egg/panko will stick to oils.

  • Alternatively you could dredge the chicken in flour then dunk it in a light batter, then coat with Panko. It'll give you a much thicker crust but the battering will allow you to add more herbs for flavour. Depends on what the desired end result is. – Chef Flambe Mar 11 '12 at 9:59
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    Just wanted to second NOT adding oil to any part of the coating. That oil lets the cooking oil penetrate and break up your coating. Way back we tried making falafel, and used oil when they were too dry--into the fryer, and it was like they disappeared! The oil inside mixed with the frying oil and they broke up. – bikeboy389 Mar 11 '12 at 20:34
  • This is the combo that I use and it is very successful. – haakon.io May 31 '17 at 16:39
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This works every time:

  • dredge in the seasoned flour (a teaspoon each of oregano, dill, onion, garlic, ginger and paprika)
  • dredge in an egg/sour cream mixture
  • dredge in the panko

This method should work great for your schnitzel.

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Use water or milk to thin the eggs, and not oil. I've found the eggs by themselves were too thick and didn't stick well, but thinning them out let them wet the surface evenly enough to get breadcrumbs sticking nicely.

And oil won't help any of it stick, and doubly so because the oil will probably make it easier for the coating to dissolve in the cooking oil, rather than staying together. Besides, you will likely get enough oil in the recipe from frying.

As for flour... well, I've used it sometimes, and not used it sometimes, I've never seen a dramatic effect from pre-flouring before an egg wash, at least not one that outweighs the extra fussiness of the step. On the other hand, I sometimes make a thin batter with flour, spices and the egg mix, and dip in that before the breadcrumbs for a thicker crust... which is probably a similar effect to a flour layer, but much easier for me.

Disclaimer - I've used these breading techniques on cheese, or on vegetables like eggplant, and not actually on chicken - I think the principles would be similar, though.

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I don't use flour when panko breading instead I put a layer of panko on a tray and then dip each piece ofchicken or pork in a seasoned egg mixture and lay them on top of the layer of panko then put another layer of panko on top and let rest for 15 minutes to allow the pankao to absorb the moisture and bind to the meat...then fry as usual

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