I was requested to make a very quintessentially "Southern Meal" the other night - fried round steaks and fried okra. I've made Fried Round Steaks (the Pioneer Woman's recipe) before, but this isn't something we make very often. It was delicious the time we had it before, but of course (being me) I wanted to see if I could find a slightly different recipe to share on the blog, and to increase my ever growing recipe index of recipes we've enjoyed (it seems I've been in a slump lately - there have been a LOT of recipes we've tried over the past couple months that were not blog worthy, and some that made it into the trash or were given to the dogs because they just didn't come out right and weren't salvageable).
This one, finally, is a keeper! The double breading gives the crust a nice thickness to it (if you prefer a thinner breading, try the Fried Round recipe I linked above), but the gravy? Oh the gravy. It is wonderful. Creamy, perfectly seasoned, and a perfect complement to this steak recipe. My son wanted to drink the leftover gravy.
Some had this with rice, some had this with mashed potatoes on the side (why, you may ask? Well, that would be because I had both mashed potatoes and rice in the refrigerator, and decided to use up leftovers rather then make more food)!
White Country Gravy slightly adapted from Chow
4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, more to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, more to taste
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more / less to taste)
3 cups milk
- Melt the butter in a large frying pan over medium heat until foaming. Sprinkle in the flour, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Cook, whisking frequently, until the mixture has turned a golden brown hue, about 6 minutes.
- Whisk continuously, and slowly pour in the milk. Bring the gravy to a simmer and let cook, whisking occasionally, until the mixture has thickened slightly, about 1 minute (the gravy will continue to thicken as it sits). Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Keep warm over very low heat while you make the steak.
Chicken Fried Steak adapted from Chow
1 cup milk
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more as needed
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon kosher salt, more if needed
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
1 lb cube steaks
3/4 cup vegetable oil, for frying
- Place the milk in a shallow dish; set aside. In a second shallow dish, whisk together the flour, measured pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, measured salt, and cayenne; set aside.
- One at a time, dip each cube steak in the reserved flour mixture, turn to coat, and shake off any excess. Dip in the milk, turn to coat, and dip in the flour mixture a second time, shaking off any excess. Place breaded steaks on a plate or baking sheet and repeat with the remaining pieces.
- Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until shimmering but not smoking or 350°F on a deep-fry thermometer. Meanwhile, fit a wire rack over a baking sheet; set aside.
- When the oil is ready, fry 2 to 3 pieces of meat (don’t crowd the pan) until they are golden brown and cooked through, approximately 2 minutes per side. Transfer to the wire rack (this will help keep the bottoms from getting soggy, as opposed to putting them directly on a plate or baking sheet), and cover loosely with a piece of aluminum foil to keep warm (or place in a warm oven). Repeat with the remaining pieces.
- Serve immediately, smothered in the gravy served over mashed potatoes or rice if desired.