In the Sound of Music, Maria sings about her favorite things-raindrops on roses and whiskers on kitttens, brown paper packages tied up with strings, crisp apple strudel and... schnitzel with noodles. I was always a little curious about why this particular dish made it onto her list of favorites, but when I actually tried jaeger schnitzel with spatzle at the Tyrolean Inn in Ben Lomond, I got it. German food is stereotyped as being bland, so I hadn't been expecting much when my parents took me to a German restaurant. I'd expected potatoes and cabbage, but what I got was a scrumptious breaded pork steak covered in a succulent mushroom sauce and dainty, buttery little dumplings that tasted amazing when dipped in said sauce.
    The recipe I used to make jaeger schnitzel for lunch today is somewhat simplified, but delicious just the same. Once again, I was impressed by how perfectly the mushroom sauce compliments the breaded pork, adding flavor without drowning out the taste of the meat. It is a fairly simple and fast process, but it does require a little bit of setup beforehand.

*serves 1
1 thin (1/2 inch wide) boneless pork chop
2 tbsp all purpose flour
1 egg
1 tbsp milk
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp butter

 For mushroom sauce:
2 crimini mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 tsp butter
1 tsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp water
2 tbsp light cream

Cut slits one inch apart around the edge of the pork chop so that it will lie flat when cooked. Wrap the pork chop in cling wrap, then use a meat hammer or a heavy rolling pin to pound it to a thickness of 1/4 inch. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Set up three pie tins, one with flour spread in the bottom, one with the egg and milk beaten together, and one with breadcrumbs spread out in the bottom. Dip the pork chop in the flour, then flip it to coat the other side. Repeat this with the egg mixture, then with the breadcrumbs. Heat the vegetable oil in a small nonstick skillet over high heat. Melt the butter into the hot oil, and reduce heat to medium. Add the pork chop, and brown both sides in the skillet. Put the pork chop in an oven safe container and put it in the oven for about 2 minutes longer, turning the oven off before you put the pork in.

 Meanwhile, add an additional teaspoon of butter to the hot skillet, and use it to brown the mushrooms. While the mushrooms are browning, add the vinegar. When the mushrooms are slightly brown and soft, add the water and the light cream, and cook over high heat, stirring. When the sauce has thickened slightly and turned light brown, take it off the heat. Put the pork chop on a plate, and pour the sauce over it. Serve with a small green salad, if desired.