This famous dish—extremely plain, and simplicity itself to prepare—is more often than not grossly libelled, and any piece of veal which is fried, after having been dipped in egg and breadcrumbs, goes by the name of either “à la Milanaise” or “à la Viennoise.” The authentic Costoletta alla Milanese should, in the first place, be a real veal cutlet and the meat should not be removed from the bone.
We frequently get a boneless veal “cutlet” à la Milanaise, which in reality consists of some cheaper and inferior cut. And again, only the very best meat should be used for this plain and succulent dish. The cutlets are first of all flattened so they will be very thin, next dipped in flour, then in yolk of egg, to which salt and pepper have been added, and evenly coated with fine white breadcrumbs and fried in butter to a rich golden colour. They are served with crisp fried potatoes and garnished with a slice of lemon. This is how they are served in Milan, and this is the genuine Costoletta alla Milanese. The embellishments which adorn them in most countries—macaroni, mushrooms, tongue and ham, truffles, tomato sauce—in other words, the “garniture” à la Milanaise known to all chefs and cooks, is not Italian. And when the cutlets are cooked to perfection this elaborate garnish tends to spoil rather than improve this excellent dish.