Sautéing Meat, Poultry, and Seafood
Sautéing uses a small amount of butter or oil in a shallow pan over relatively high heat. Meats and poultry are cut into thin slices, known as escalope in a French, or scaloppini in Italian. They may also be portioned into cutlets, known as schnitzel in German, or cut into tournedos (small medallions). Small poultry breasts, and seafood including shrimp and scallops can be sautéed whole. Fish fillets, depending on the size, can be cooked whole, like a small trout, or portion cut into tranches (slices), or goujons (fingers). Always season the product first. Dredging in flour is often done to add color, texture, and to retain moisture. The sautéed items can be finished by deglazing the pan with liquids, including wine, stock, or a sauce.
Sauté Preparation Method
Best Choice for Sautéing: Scaloppini (veal), beef tournedos, thin pork cutlets, boneless lamb loin medallions, chicken and duck breasts, fish fillets (tranches, goujons), shrimp, scallops
Accompaniments: Pan sauces prepared a la minute, classic small French brown or white sauces, béarnaise and hollandaise variations
Sautéed Fish a la Meuniere
Sautéed Sole a la Meuniere is a classic French technique garnished with brown butter,
lemon, and chopped parsley. This recipe can be prepared with any type of fish, chicken, or white meat, including veal.
Pan searing is similar to sautéing, but is often used for thicker cuts that are started in a pan and finished in an oven.