Chicken Fried Steak with Sage Gravy

By • February 8, 2011 • 13 Comments



Author Notes: I remember my first chicken fried steak. It was in Houston, Texas, at the home of Jenny's in-laws. They were wise chicken fried steak aficionados, and cooked theirs in an iron skillet out on the patio on a squat little grill, where grease was welcome to spray the plants. The steaks came out of the pan wrapped in a warped brown and salty crust. It was my first time in Texas and knew from then on it would not be my last.

A few weekends ago, I went to Oklahoma for a couple of book events, and got to hang out with Jeff Martin, the founder of Booksmart Tulsa, who may be the coolest guy north of Texas. At one of our stops -- lunch at Lucky's (go if you can) -- he talked me into chicken fried steak. It was just as delicious as I remembered it. This one came with a sage gravy. If you don't have guts for the gravy, a squeeze of lemon will work well (think veal Milanese). Just don't tell anyone in Tulsa I said that.
Amanda Hesser

Serves 4

  • Four 1/4-inch thick ribeye steaks
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup plus 7 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons rendered bacon fat or butter
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped sage
  1. Working with one steak at a time, lay the steak between two sheets of parchment or wax paper and flatten with a meat pounder to 1/8-inch thickness. Season with flattened steaks with salt and pepper.
  2. Spread 1 cup flour on a large plate. Season with flour with salt and pepper. In a large bowl, whisk together the buttermilk and egg.
  3. Again, working one steak at a time, dip the steak in the flour, lightly coating both sides. Next, dip the steak in the buttermilk mixture, letting any excess drip off. Then dip the steak in flour once more, lightly but completely coating the steak; shake off any excess flour. Set the coated steaks on a baking sheet until ready to use.
  4. Heat the bacon fat or butter in a medium saucepan. Once it's hot, add the remaining 7 tablespoons flour, and whisk until smooth. Cook over medium low heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk, then the cream, bring to a boil -- whisking all the time -- then reduce the heat and let the gravy simmer until thickened, 3 to 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Meanwhile, cover the base of a large iron skillet with 1/8-inch canola oil. Place over medium high heat. Once the oil is hot, add as many steaks as will fit (probably just one or two), and brown on both sides, about 2 minutes per side. Do the rest in batches. A splatter guard comes in handy if you don't want your stove covered in beef fat. As the steaks finish cooking, set them aside on a baking sheet.
  6. When the steaks are nearly finished, whisk the gravy and add the sage. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  7. Serve each steak with a ladleful of gravy.
Jump to Comments (13)

Tags: fried, gravy, sage, steak

Comments (13) Questions (1)

Default-small
Default-small
Paulnbuda

11 months ago Stubor

I usually make my gravy in the pan drippings and add a little garlic, too. If you fry up some bacon or sausage for the the grease, even better. You just can't beat a good heart clogger.

Default-small

12 months ago msnowdon

Delicious!! Thanks so much for the recipe. My husband loved it!!

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

12 months ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Great to hear this!

Default-small

12 months ago msnowdon

Just getting ready to make this now. It's my husband's all time favorite. If it's on a menu, he orders it every time! It never appealed to me until ... now! Can't wait! I'll be sure to report back.

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

12 months ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Hope it went well! Let us know.

Default-small

over 2 years ago Robyne Jane

Im studying for exams and I need to eat this right now - comfort food. This recipe looks great, I could do this I reckon. My sister ordered this in a resturant once and was really surprised it wasn't chicken (we're Australian). Maybe once my exams are finished I will cook more than noodles...

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

over 2 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Yes, hope you'll give it a try!

Default-small

over 3 years ago RisaCooks

This looks so good, I wish I could taste it right through the monitor. OMG. Can I have a piece with some of that amazing gravy?

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

over 3 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Just a few ingredients, a little time in the kitchen, and it's all yours!

Default-small

over 3 years ago Jennyshusband

As the son of Jenny's in-laws (a.k.a. Jenny's husband), I can say that I long for the memories that good chicken fried steak will evoke. I hope that Jenny will get on the case soon. Gravy is mandatory. Plus biscuits, also with gravy.

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

over 3 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Ack -- I forgot biscuits!

Face_hat_underpainting_1

over 3 years ago Queen of Spoons

Oh you have to at least have a little gravy! I usually order mine on the side so I can just dip a bite into it rather than having it smothered (as it is usually served).

This is definitely one of those worth it very occasional splurge meals. Most places around here (Central Texas) also offer a chicken breast version (also pounded out flat). This sounds like a great version!

Tad_and_amanda_in_the_kitchen

over 3 years ago Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

Enjoy!