We've been cookin' cool the last couple of days and for good reason, but every once in a while cool takes a back seat to comfort. What, pray tell, screams comfort more than chicken fried steak, mashed potatoes, gravy and corn?
This is one meal we don't have very often because we tend to make oinks of ourselves and honestly, why set yourself up. In fact, the last time I cooked up a mess of the stuff was way back in 2009 - see here.
In order to keep the quantities down to a more reasonable level for 2 people, I cooked way under a pound of cube steak, a mere 2 small russet potatoes went into the mashed and 1 cup of corn hit the pot. Acceptable, right?
Not so much. Enough gravy is never enough and I wasn't in the mood to polish my halo so a large pan of the stuff materialized on the stove top. Between the two of us, we finished every drop. I for one am NOT stepping on that cursed scale this morning. Enough said.
This is a repost of the recipe I used the last time we had Chicken Fried Steak, way back when. In last night's version, I used 12 ounces of beef cube steak and gave it a little extra tenderizing by pounding it out thinner before it was coated and fried. Also instead of pepper bacon, I used some of our homemade pancetta. Delicous!
Chicken Fried Steak
1 pound cube steaks – pork or beef
1 teaspoon Montreal steak seasoning, divided
Coarse ground black pepper
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup buttermilk
3 Tablespoons hot sauce (I used Franks)
2 slices pepper bacon, diced
1/2 onion, chopped fine
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
Salt & pepper to taste
2 heaping tablespoons all purpose flour
1-1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup chicken stock (as required)
Season cube steaks with steak seasoning and pepper. Beat buttermilk, egg and hot sauce together until well combined. Dip cube steaks into flour, followed by the egg mixture to coat well, then back into the flour, patting the steaks lightly so they take on more flour. Set aside.
Heat vegetable oil in a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Fry coated steaks for 3 minutes on one side, two on the other – or until golden brown on both sides. Remove to a rack on a baking sheet and keep warm in 250 oven.
Remove all but 2 Tablespoons oil from pan. Sauté bacon until crisp, move to side of pan and add onion. Cook until stirring occasionally until golden brown and soft. Incorporate bacon into onion and sprinkle flour on top, followed by garlic powder and thyme. Stir constantly for 2 minutes until flour is well incorporated. Whisk in milk and cook until mixture comes to a boil and thickens – about 10 minutes. Add chicken stock to thin gravy to desired consistency. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper. Serve over steaks.