Chicken Fried Steak with Sage Gravy

February 8, 2011


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

Ingredients

  • 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
In This Recipe

Directions

  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.

More Great Recipes:
American|Buttermilk|Sage|Steak|Bacon|Beef|Milk/Cream|Father's Day|Entree

Reviews (20) Questions (1)

20 Reviews

john February 6, 2015
sounds delicious, but doing this to a Rib eye seems crazy. Why have chicken fried steak when you can have a rib eye? I use sirloin, not as expensive and still much better than the common cube steak.
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. February 9, 2015
Fair point -- I'll make a note in the recipe!
 
sexyLAMBCHOPx December 21, 2017
I wouldn't use my ribeye's for chicken-fried steak! That's the beauty of chicken fried steak using sirloin, cube, etc. to make it something special for way less money.
 
john February 6, 2015
sounds delicious, but doing this to a Rib eye seems crazy. Why have chicken fried steak when you can have a rib eye? I use sirloin, not as expensive and still much better than the common cube steak.
 
john February 6, 2015
sounds delicious, but doing this to a Rib eye seems crazy. Why have chicken fried steak when you can have a rib eye? I use sirloin, not as expensive and still much better than the common cube steak.
 
john February 6, 2015
sounds delicious, but doing this to a Rib eye seems crazy. Why have chicken fried steak when you can have a rib eye? I use sirloin, not as expensive and still much better than the common cube steak.
 
Stubor October 10, 2013
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.
 
btglenn February 29, 2016
I learned how to cook this from my Texas - born and raised husband. He used top round or top sirloin, both cheaper cuts, and made the gravy as you do, in the pan drippings. The version above is more effete and more costly. Chicken-fried steak was developed in order to prepare a cheaper cut of meat and still have it tender and tasty!
 
msnowdon September 10, 2013
Delicious!! Thanks so much for the recipe. My husband loved it!!
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. September 10, 2013
Great to hear this!
 
msnowdon September 9, 2013
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.
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. September 9, 2013
Hope it went well! Let us know.
 
Robyne J. December 12, 2011
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...
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. December 18, 2011
Yes, hope you'll give it a try!
 
RisaCooks February 22, 2011
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?
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. February 22, 2011
Just a few ingredients, a little time in the kitchen, and it's all yours!
 
Jennyshusband February 8, 2011
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.
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. February 9, 2011
Ack -- I forgot biscuits!
 
Queen O. February 8, 2011
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).<br /><br />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!
 
Author Comment
Amanda H. February 9, 2011
Enjoy!