Texas Chicken-Fried Steak With Cream Gravy
|Title:||Texas Chicken-Fried Steak With Cream Gravy|
Makes 6 large servings (2 steaks each)
3 pounds round steak, 1/2-inch thick
2 cups all-purpose white flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup milk
Vegetable oil (corn, peanut, safflower oil) for frying (see note)
1/4 cup pan drippings
1/4 cup all-purpose white flour
3 cups warm milk
To make the steaks: Trim the fat off the meat, remove the bone and cut the meat into 6 equal-size pieces. Use a meat mallet to pound the steaks on both sides, until they are 1/4-inch thick. Then cut each pounded piece of steak in half (making 12 pieces total).
Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a large shallow bowl. Beat the eggs and milk together well in another large shallow bowl.
Dredge the steaks in the seasoned flour, coating them well on both sides. Then use the meat mallet to pound the flour into the steaks. Dip the steaks in the egg-milk mixture, then dredge them again in the remaining flour. Set the steaks aside in a single layer on a large piece of wax paper.
Heat the oven to 200 degrees F.
Pour the vegetable oil to a depth of 1/2 inch into 2 or 3 large heavy-bottom skillets (iron skillets are best). You will have to cook the steaks in 2 or 3 batches, depending on the number of skillets you have. Set the skillets over medium heat. The oil will be hot enough for frying when it pops when you sprinkle a few drops of water on it.
Carefully put the steaks in a single layer in the hot oil and cook over medium heat until the bottom side of each steak is golden brown (about 7 to 8 minutes). Turn the steaks over, cover the skillets, reduce the heat to low and cook until the bottom sides are golden brown and the steaks are tender (about 8 to 10 minutes).
Transfer the steaks to a heatproof platter, cover loosely with aluminum foil and keep them warm in the oven while you cook the remaining steaks and prepare the cream gravy.
To make cream gravy: Pour the remaining oil out of one large skillet into a heatproof bowl or measuring cup, but leave in the skillet any particles of batter that stick to the bottom of the pan. Return 1/4 cup of the oil to the skillet and stir in 1/4 cup of flour. Cook for about 3 to 5 minutes over low heat, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom of the pan, but don't let the mixture brown.
Slowly add the warm milk to the pan, stirring with a fork or wire whisk to prevent lumps from forming. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the gravy is smooth and thick. Add salt and black pepper to taste. Serve the chicken-fried steaks with the cream gravy poured over them.
NOTE: Beef suet, lard or solid vegetable shortening are traditionally used for cooking chicken-fried steak.