Many years ago when my mother-in-law came to visit us in Oklahoma all the way from her native West Virginia, the thing she loved best about my home state was CHICKEN FRIED STEAK! Mom had never had it before, and it never dawned on me that someone might not have ever eaten that wonderful delicacy. When we took her out to eat, she asked “What’s the best thing on the menu?” I told her “Chicken Fried Steak.” We both ordered it. I don’t think she ordered anything else the entire time she stayed with us–around 10 days, after I had my first baby–whenever we went out to eat after she tasted Chicken Fried Steak.
I wonder if cowboys ever ate this? I know they ate a lot of beans and so on, but gosh, I really think this had to come from the trail drives or ranches “back in the day”–it is WONDERFUL. It’s one of the foods that’s common, and that we are known for in this part of the USA. In fact, it’s part of the official STATE MEAL OF OKLAHOMA, as of 1988! (WHO KNEW?) My mom never made it often, but maybe it was because she knew if she did, it would be all I’d ever want to eat
I found this great recipe online for Chicken Fried Steak BITES that looks wonderful–whether you’re entertaining or just want something different and good for yourself and family members.
Chicken Fried Steak Bites
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Cooking Level: Intermediate
The secret to true “chicken fried steak” is frying beef in cooking oil that was previously used to fry chicken. If you use fresh oil, it is considered “country fried” with less authentic flavor. The same batter recipe and method we’ve given below can be used to fry up some chicken breasts for lunch before cooking for the party for improved pre-party satisfaction.
• 2 lb. cube steak, cut into 1-1/2 inch pieces
• 4 cups canola oil Batter
• 1/2 cup milk
• 1 egg
• 2 cups all-purpose flour
• 1-1/2 tablespoon seasoned salt
• 2 teaspoons coarse ground black pepper
1. Prepare a paper towel-lined plate for finished steak pieces and set aside.
2. Heat oil in a deep cast iron skillet over high heat until the temperature reaches 350F, then reduce to medium. Note: if not using a thermometer, test the temperature of the oil by sticking the end of a bamboo skewer into it. When the indicated temperature range is reached, the end of the bamboo will sizzle, then reduce heat to medium.
3. In a medium mixing bowl, beat egg and milk for batter until well mixed.
4. In a shallow dish such as a pie plate, combine the dry batter ingredients well.
5. Dredge each piece of steak in flour mixture, dip into the egg mixture, the roll in flour mixture again to coat well.
6. Shake off excess flour, then place into the hot oil for 2 to 3 minutes on each side until lightly browned.
7. Remove cooked pieces to plate and allow to rest for 2 minutes before serving.
• 2 tablespoons bacon drippings
• 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
• 3/4 teaspoon salt
• 3/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
• 3-1/2 cups whole milk
1. Melt bacon grease in an 8-inch iron skillet over medium heat.
2. Brown the flour in the bacon grease along with the salt, and pepper, whisking constantly until golden in color, about 5-7 minutes.
3. Gradually add 3 cups of milk a little at a time, stirring constantly to prevent curdling. Add more milk as necessary to keep from becoming too thick.
4. Keep warm over low heat until ready to serve.
Tip: Gravy can be made ahead of time and refrigerated overnight or frozen. Allow to defrost overnight in fridge before use, and heat slowly in the microwave stirring at 30-second intervals or over low heat on the stovetop. Add more milk as necessary to achieve desired consistency.
I will definitely be making this, and it looked so great I just had to share. I’m thinking my cowboy ancestors must have had this delectable dish many times!