This easy beef cachopo recipe is to be considered a base for all your favourite flavour combos. There are so many versions of Asturian beef cachopo recipes around but this one can be considered a base that you can play with if you want to.
Call it what you want – a schnitzel, an escalope… but here in Spain it is an Asturian “cachopo”.
Ingredients for the beef cachopo recipe
- 2 beef shoulder steaks
- Flour for dredging
- Breadcrumbs (the fresher the better)
- A good creamy cheese with a low melting point, such as smoked brie
- Additional flavourings (see below). Optional.
- A drizzle of oil for shallow frying
Firstly – ensure that you take the steaks out of the fridge in plenty of time before you cook. Cooking meat from room temparature avoids it shrinking and tightening when it hits the pan.
Season the steaks lightly with salt and pepper and then use the brie to slather one side… or lay thin slices on top if that’s easier (it all depends which cheese you use, in terms of consistency).
Dredge the steaks in flour, then in the egg, then in the breadcrumbs. Often I do a “double dredge” for these kinds of dishes but it is important to only do this part once for this particular recipe.
During preparation it is important not to add too much filling , “since the recipe would be unbalanced and could lose the simplicity of this dish,” he adds.
Once that’s all done, it’s time to cook!
Most important here is the temperature of the oil. It should be between 160/170 degrees celsius. If it is too hot, the outside will brown too quickly, leaving the meat uncooked inside. Too low a temperature and your filling will just slide off.
Heat a drizzle of oil in the pan and once hot, place the steaks (filling side up) into said pan.
Once it is golden brown underneath, flip the steak over and raise the temperature slightly.
Once that’s done, place the steaks on absorbent paper to drain any excess oil and to let the meat rest. A few minutes should be enough – you can use this time to grab your plates and cutlery.
Traditionally, cachopo is served with skinny fries – but it’s entirely up to you at home. We enjoy it with chunky chips or crushed new potatoes (tossed in butter and fresh parsley).
In addition to the quality of the ingredients used, another important point to take into account for getting a good beef cachopo recipe is (according to Bodega El Capricho) the cut used . “It is a detail that tends to be overlooked, but not all are the same.” In this case, the beef shoulder is ideal because of its resilience and suitability for breading. Although, El Capricho de José Gordón also suggests using other leg cuts, such as the hip, the top or the rump.
Spain Buddy tips for this beef cachopo recipe
- Feeling the cold? Then instead of serving it with skinny fries, why not try it with some mashed potato and a creamy mushroom sauce.
- Wanting a summery dish? Serve with a fresh salad and perhaps a wedge of lemon.
- Love an extra kick in your dishes? Stir a teeny bit of horseradish sauce into the egg wash. Go careful though – that stuff is hot!
- Diego Nahuel, head of R&D at the Bodega El Capricho de José Gordón restaurant in León, suggests adding a teaspoon of mustard, or garlic and chopped parsley, or some Thai curry flavour or similar, to the beaten egg for an extra flavour boost.
This recipe was inspired by this one.
For more recipes like this, visit our Spanish meat and poultry recipes section.
Elle, along with Alan, is the owner of Spain Buddy and the busy web design business – Spain Web Design by Gandy-Draper.
Born a “Norverner”, she then spent most of her life “Dann Saff” before moving to Spain in 2006. Elle’s loves are Alan, the internet, dogs, good food, and dry white wine – although not necessarily in that order.