After checking out the Pioneer Woman’s blog earlier this week, I had chicken fried steak on the brain. To be completely honest, I have never ordered a chicken fried steak before or attempted to make one. I know… how “un-Texan” of me. It just didn’t really seem to be my kind of thing.
But then I saw PW’s blog… and how delicious her chicken fried steak looked. I immediately went out and purchased a pound of cube steak, with high hopes of making a delicious yet healthy version of her recipe.
Big time fail.
Chicken fried steak is in no way meant to be healthy. The fact of the matter is that cube steak just isn’t a very good cut of meat… at all. In fact, eating it by itself nearly made me gag. It completely relies on the thick fried breading and creamy gravy to make it good. No matter how much salt and gravy you pile on to it, it desperately needs the fried breading.
Last night, I attempted to make a healthy cfs. I googled a couple of recipes and came up with one that seemed pretty good, and had about 300 calories per serving including gravy. Not too shabby. My recipe consisted of the following: cube steak, egg whites, little bit of half and half, wheat flour, paprika, cayenne pepper, a bit of regular flour, salt, pepper, and a few breadcrumbs. I followed the process suggested on the recipes I read. Flour, egg white wash, wheat flour mixture, then sprayed each side with cooking spray and cooked in a little bit of oil.
I also made a gravy that I ended up liking. Here are the exact details on that:
1 can beef stock
1 tbsp corn starch
1 tbsp water
1/4 cup half and half
Pinches of cayenne, paprika, and salt
Lots of black pepper
In the pan you used to cook your meat, pour in beef stock. Scrape up all the tasty bits from the bottom of the pan. Let cook down for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. It will come to a pretty rapid boil at some point. Once it looks like your stock has greatly reduced, remove from heat.
In a separate dish, whisk together corn starch and water. Once completely blended, add this into the beef stock pan. Stir together then turn heat back on. Add in half and half and spices and let cook for a few minutes until desired thickness.
It looked like it would taste pretty good, but it was just a little blah. If I am going to eat meat, I need it to have real flavor. I want real savory spices with a little bit of a kick. Regardless of my attempts to spice it up some, this meat was having none of it. I guess for the true cfs lovers out there, this could satisfy your craving in a pinch (a very tight pinch). But, I think if you want to eat the cfs, head down to your favorite diner and have them fry it up right. Just don’t do it every day, or week for that matter.
Don’t get me wrong. We still ate it, and it didn’t taste bad by any means. It just didn’t blow my socks off. Some things just weren’t made to be healthified. Guess that’s how the cookie crumbles.
Speaking of cookies, the oatmeal chocolate chip still taste delicious, on day 5. Now those will be a repeat visitor in my house. 🙂