Breaded and fried beef cutlets, known as country-fried steak, originated in the Southern United States as an affordable alternative to high-priced steaks. The tenderized cubed beef steaks are dredged in flour, egg, and breadcrumbs, then pan-fried until golden brown. Legend has it that German and Austrian immigrants who settled in Texas in the 1800s brought schnitzel recipes, which evolved into country-fried steak. The classic accompaniment is sawmill, or country gravy spooned over the crispy beef. This hearty, down-home dish remains popular today as an inexpensive, comforting meal.
|beef cubed steaks (about 4 ounces each)
|egg, slightly beaten
|ground black pepper
|Chopped fresh parsley (optional)
|ground black pepper
|ground red pepper
Beat egg and milk in a shallow dish. Combine flour, salt, and pepper in a second shallow dish. Dip steaks in egg mixture, then in flour mixture, turning to coat both sides.
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook 2 steaks for 3-4 minutes per side until browned and cooked. Repeat with remaining oil and steaks.
For gravy, heat 1 tablespoon oil in the skillet. Whisk in 1 tablespoon flour and cook for 1 minute. Gradually stir in milk, cooking for 2-3 minutes until thickened. Stir in salt and peppers.
Serve steaks topped with gravy. Garnish with parsley if desired.
Cook's Tip :
For added flavor, marinate steaks in buttermilk before breading.
Q: What is country-fried steak?
A: Country fried steak is a classic Southern dish made with a tenderized steak that’s breaded and fried until crispy.
Q: What is the difference between country fried steak and chicken fried steak?
A: The main difference between country fried steak and chicken fried steak is the cut of meat used. Country fried steak is typically made with round steak, while chicken fried steak is made with breaded and fried chicken.
Q: How do you make country-fried steak?
A: To make country-fried steak, pound it to tenderize it, then dredge it in flour and fry it in hot oil until it’s golden brown and crispy.
Q: What is the best meat cut for country-fried steak?
A: The best cut of meat to use for country-fried steak is a round steak that’s been tenderized.
Q: How do you make the gravy for country-fried steak?
A: To make the gravy for country-fried steak, cook the pan drippings with flour and milk, whisking constantly until the gravy is smooth and creamy.
Q: Can I use store-bought chicken-fried steak instead of making it from scratch?
A: Yes, you can use store-bought chicken-fried steak if you prefer. Just follow the package instructions to cook it.
Q: What can I serve with country-fried steak?
A: Country-fried steak is often served with mashed potatoes and gravy. It’s a comforting and classic combination.
Q: How do you keep country-fried steak warm while making the gravy?
A: To keep country-fried steak warm while making the gravy, place each steak on a paper towel-lined plate and cover them with foil.
Q: Is country-fried steak the same as chicken-fried steak?
A: Yes, country-fried steak and chicken-fried steak are often used interchangeably to refer to the same dish.
Q: Can I make a country-fried steak without frying it?
A: No, country-fried steak is usually made by frying the breaded steak for a crisp exterior and tender interior.