Sunday, April 24, 2011

Chicken Fried Steak!

This is so good that it totally deserves the exclamation point! I make a lot of Italian themed dishes and all of them are arguably my favorite meal depending on my mood.  This is probably my favorite thing I've ever made that didn't involve tomatoes.  I've had chicken fried steak only a few times, and living in NJ and not Texas, it's hard to find restaurants that actually make it homemade.  Apparently Texas restaurants serve over 800,000 chicken fried steak orders every day!  Needless to say, our next trip to Austin is going to include a chicken fried steak dinner.  So knowing what this dish should taste like, and not what I've eaten in local diners, I set out to find a few recipes.

There were several that looked good, but I settled on a tried and true recipe from our friends at Cooks Illustrated.  Instead of using 6 small steaks, we used 2 good sized steaks, maybe 8 or 10 oz each, but kept the measurements of everything else the same.  This allowed me to use a bit more batter on the steaks, a very good thing.  Being bigger steaks, we cooked them one at a time, much easier this way I think. Another change we made to the recipe was we used a vegetable/corn oil blend instead of peanut oil.  They didn't have peanut oil at the grocery store, and we didn't see the need to track it down just for this recipe.  

As you can see, we served this with some delicious mashed potatoes and Bec's fluffy biscuits.

Tip: definitely use a dutch oven to cook these in. I used our trusty 12 inch cast iron skillet, and it got a little messy. If we had a gas cooktop, we'd probably be posting about a kitchen fire and not chicken friend steak.