How To Make Chicken Fried Steak

 

This is one of those posts that has been sitting in my “Draft” folder for weeks! It’s almost getting to be too nice outside for Chicken Fried Steak. This is usually something I crave all winter long. It is comfort food at its finest. I learned how to make Chicken Fried Steak by watching my mom. Sometimes she would let me help her mix the flour and spices together, or I could stir the gravy as it simmered away on the stove. Truth be told, I don’t really have a recipe written down anywhere for this. It’s all up in my noggin’.  So, the recipe you will read below will have a lot of “a little of ____” and “to taste” and “if you like it.” (And I hope you do like it.)

Chicken Fried Steak
Serves 4-6 people

Ingredients:

For steaks:
4-6 cubed steaks (look for them in the meat section at the grocery store or ask the butcher)
4 cups (or so) 2 % or whole milk
1 cup (or so) all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. salt
a little paprika
about 4 Tbsp. canola oil, for frying

For gravy:
1 beef bouillon cube (for gravy, totally optional)
1/4 cup butter
reserved flour and milk (from meat prep–read below, it will all make sense)

Instructions:

For steaks:

1. Soak the cubed steaks in the milk for about an hour. (Why? It makes the meat more tender.) Reserve the milk for the gravy. (That means do not throw it out under any circumstances!)

2. Mix the flour, pepper, salt and paprika together in a pie plate or wide, shallow bowl.

3. Remove the meat from the milk and…

dredge it in the flour. (You really want to give it a good coating of flour–turn it over a couple of times.) Reserve flour for gravy.

**Save the flour for the gravy!** Don’t forget!

4. Heat a heavy-bottomed 10 to 12″ skillet (such as cast iron) over high heat. Add half of the canola oil to the pan and heat until the oil “shimmers”. Place 2 or 3 of the floured steaks in the hot pan. Turn the heat down to medium-high.

**Save the flour for the gravy!** (You won’t forget, right?)

Cook on the first side until you see pools of blood (sorry, I know it sounds gross) form on the top, about 3-4 minutes.

Flip the steaks over. (The backside should be nice and brown.)

Cook the other side of the steaks for an additional 4 minutes, or until any juices run clear. Remove the first batch of steaks to a warm platter. Cover loosely with foil.

Without wiping out the skillet, add the remaining canola oil. Repeat the cooking process with the remaining floured steaks.

6. After the second batch of steaks are done, add 1/4 cup butter. Use a metal spatula or wooden spoon to loosen the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.

For gravy:

Add the reserved flour to the pan. (If you don’t have between 1/4-1/2 cup of flour left, you will have to add a little more to the pan.) Stir to form a paste. Cook for about a minute.

Slowly whisk in the reserved milk. (You may need more milk, you may need less. It all depends on how thick you want the gravy and how much extra flour you had left after dredging.)

Whisk vigorously to remove some of the lumps. (Some lumps are good–it’s supposed to be home-style gravy after all.)

Taste and adjust any seasonings. Add the beef bouillon cube, if you want to. (Be careful of adding any extra salt–those bouillon cube are very salty. If you use one, you may not need any extra salt at all.)

Let the gravy simmer on low heat for about 5 minutes.

To serve:

Serve cubed steaks warm with mashed potatoes (or baked pan fries) and hot gravy.

May I suggest a vegetable accompaniment? We like ours with peas or corn.

May I also suggest a nice, flaky buttermilk biscuit on the side?

And what about leftovers?

The steaks keep well in the fridge for a few days. You may have extra gravy–don’t throw it away! My husband likes to eat biscuits and gravy for breakfast the next morning or two after. The gravy will also keep for several days in the fridge–make sure it is tightly covered. You may have to add a bit more milk to thin it out upon reheating.

Any other questions?

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10 Comments

  1. ? Do you cook on a gas stove Linds? I have electric and I can never make things like this.. they are burnt on one side and raw on the other.. I mean the halves on the cooking side.. Do you know what I mean? (I don’t mean that I don’t turn things).

  2. every time i visit az beka tells me how awesome she knows you are and then i go and miss tou tons more all over again. ;-)

    just thought you should know.
    p.s. we just bought a home today. yikes. it’s sort of crazy – can’t wait to catch up next week once we drive home…..and also want to hear about your trip…

  3. I never made pan fried steak before. I have a fear that I’m going to ruin it. Yours looks great. I may have to try it.

    I wanted to let you know that I’ve nominated you to receive a “Blogging with a Purpose” award! I posted it on my blog, if you wish to check it out.

  4. My flour always sticks to the bottom of my pan. I think I just have cheap pans and need new ones. What do you think? It’s very frustrating. My food never looks as good as yours!!

  5. Well, Erica, thank you! You don’t see me posting the stuff that doesn’t turn out right…and it happens often! So, I think the secret to pan fried steak is to use enough oil/butter. I do use a non-stick pan sometimes, but because it’s cheap-o, the steaks always burn on one or both sides. I’ve really tried hard to get my cast iron seasoned enough to be non-stick, as it should be after a lot of use. Yes–get new pans! :) I want some new pans, too.

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