Cotoletta (from Italian: costoletta = "little rib", because of the rib that remains attached to the meat during and after the cooking) is an Italian word for a breaded veal cutlet.
Cotoletta alla milanese (milanese after its place of origin, Milan) is a fried cutlet similar to Wiener schnitzel, but cooked "bone-in". It is braised in clarified butter and traditionally uses exclusively milk-fed veal. It is often served with risotto alla milanese.
Cotoletta a orecchio di elefante ("elephant ear cutlet") is another type of milanese, which uses a thinner but larger cut of meat, and is deboned and tenderized prior to frying, similarly to the American preparation of breaded pork tenderloin. This is the most common cotoletta eaten in Italy in every day life because it is easy and fast to prepare. However, it is not popular with Milanese chefs, because the thin meat produces a strong taste of "fry". In the typical osteria in Milan the first version is much more common.
Cotoletta alla palermitana (palermitana because it takes origin from Palermo, Sicily) is similar to a milanese but the veal is brushed with lard or olive oil instead of butter, and then grilled instead of being deep fried. The breadcrumb is very often mixed with oregano and/or Parmesan cheese, it can be put on the grill upon a leaf of lemon that gives it a particular Sicilian scent. This cutlet is the only one among its "sisters" (tonkatsu, schnitzel, milanese, American style breaded meat, etc.) that does not have eggs in its breading.
Various breaded meat dishes prepared in Latin America were inspired by the cotoletta and are known as milanesa.