Cookin’ With Rants: Chicken Fried Steak

Over the Presidents’ Day Weekend, I had the opportunity to visit my Mom. As she normally does, she petitions me for a roster of meals that I want to eat and that she’ll prepare. This question always leaves me in a quandry, with all of the possible Mom Meals out there I could choose from, I have to pick between onlytwo and four. Depending on how long I visit.

So the one meal I had to choose this trip was Chicken Fried Steak. With pan gravy, of course. Naturally, I ate enough of this to hardly be able to walk. But I cleaned up the kitchen for Mama nonetheless. Anyway, I figured you all would love to know how to make this classic comfort food. This is one you really ought to have a cast iron skillet for, but lesser pans could be used.

Gonna Put It In My Belly!

First, you need some sirloin or chuck, cut thicker but tenderized to about 1/2″ thick. They can be soaked in buttermilk if you like. Prepare a pie pan with flour, salt, and pepper. This will bread the meat. In the cast iron (or other, lesser skillet) melt 3/4 cup of Crisco. Yeah, this isn’t healthy, and you know what comes next for a recommend… you can add bacon grease to this for awesomeness.ย While this melts and heats, find an old jar and mix a cup of milk and a cup of flour. Lid the jar and shake this mixture violently while you prepare the meat. Seriously, shake this shit like a disco queen, because your goal is to remove the flour lumps.

When the Crisco is hot enough to make water dance, begin coating the beef with the flour mix. Push this happyย shit well into the meat. I recommend having one skillet-full ready and breaded. Adding them at once will quickly lower the oil temp and allow the coating to stick better. Continue to fry, but try to only turn the meat once. When dark brown on both sides, remove and salt, allowing to drain on paper towels or a paper grocery sack. Your heart will thank you later in the Managed Care Facility.

When all the meat is fried, drain excess grease but retain all the black and brown fried-up bits in the skillet. Pour in up to two whole cups of milk and allow to warm. Then add the well-shaken jar of milk and flour mix. Stir constantly until thick on a high flame, and don’t look away – this can go from awesome to fucked in about three seconds.ย You can add salt and pepper to taste to this.

I prefer this with buttermilk biscuits and a side of something Southern, like green beans, mustard greens, or similar. You can substitute mashed potatoes for the biscuits, or grits if you feel really, really redneck.

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51 Responses to “Cookin’ With Rants: Chicken Fried Steak”

  1. It’s too early to be this hungry. Looks great.

  2. *sniff* That sounds so awesome that I’m just going to go ahead and lick my screen. College food sucks ass :-/ .
    ….. I think I’m going to cry. :S

  3. Oh man, one of the things I miss most from my Oklahoma days is good CFS. Now I’m hungry. Thanks.

  4. My wife is a huge chicken fried steak fan. I’ve come around, but it took awhile, mostly because I only ever ate them in college when hungover and I developed this Pavlovian nausea at the mention of it.

  5. That sounds delightfully fattening.

  6. It’s even better if someone else cooks it and cleans up!

  7. John Erickson Says:

    You forgot one key ingredient. The post-dinner angioplasty! ๐Ÿ˜€

  8. whiteladyinthehood Says:

    Yes, I’ll have a plate of this please…and a big glass of sweet tea (real sugar) to wash it down with! (it took me forever to master gravy – it can be tricky) Your mom sounds like a very sweet n special lady.

  9. Make mine using a somewhat different recipe. Have to try your mom’s next time. There is NOTHING as heartwarming (and clogging) as chicken fried steak with home-made gravy and biscuits.
    You’re a man after my own heart. Your mom is the bomb.
    Here’s to moms form the midwest who taught us to cook these tasty no longer PC meals!

  10. This looks awesome. My personal favorite redneck cuisine was always fried chicken gizzards. Mmmm…vestigial organs + lard=WIN (and instant coronary.)

  11. Holy freaking yum Batman!!

  12. Grits, redneck? Not if they’re done right, with pressed garlic, 4 cheeses and real cream. Ahem.

  13. A cast iron Skillet should be mandatory in every household. I got my first one last fall, and am so in love with it that I bought it a Valentines Day card and some filet mignon to cook for me.

    • John Erickson Says:

      And remember, when civilisation comes crashing down, cast-iron skillets are your best combination weapon and defense, easily stopping man-powered missile weaponry and even defeating small or low-velocity firearms ammunition, while serving as a near-lethal weapon in even the weakest hands, with outstanding durability to boot..
      (This Public Service Announcement brought to you by Miracle Concepts Inc. If we have a good concept, it must be a Miracle! ๐Ÿ˜€ )

      • I’ll need to bolster up my tool belt, to include a hook strong enough to hold both my cast iron skillets. The smaller, 6″ once will work good on violent babies.

        • John Erickson Says:

          And don’t forget a large, heavy-shanked, straight-blade screwdriver. Not only are they useful for unscrewing things (DUH!), but they are great for use as light crowbars, impaling weapons, wood splitters, window-glass breakers (it’s all about force concentrated on a small point of contact), wood-working tools, and even as climbing handholds. Try to get the kind either with the heavy rubber handles, or (my favourite) the old-timey ones with wooden handgrips.
          And carry rope with your skillets. With a piece of rope on the handle, you can turn them into quick body armour (as well as carrying them around your neck, rather thank on your waste), AND use the rope as lanyards so you don’t drop the pans when your hands get all slippery with blood and guts.
          Or whatever they might get slippery with.
          Not that I’ve ever had any experience in these lines, you understand…. ๐Ÿ˜€

        • Violent babies are the worst.

      • Nothing I write will make that one better.

    • I bet it loved the card. Congratulations!

  14. I really want to see a BrainRants network…and the cooking portion would be a massive hit!! I can just see and hear the awesomeness now…The inner meatlover in me is dying to try this. The rest of me is picking up a salad as I write….I must try this as this will be a favourite with Mr. Str8….Thanks for the temptation! A must try!

  15. I love Chicken Fried Steak! When we were flying regularly, I’d rate the airport cafes based on how good their CFS was. ๐Ÿ™‚ If you’re ever near Corona, CA, make sure to stop at “Bob’s Chili and Chow Hall” … excellent CFS and awesome pie too. ๐Ÿ˜€

  16. whiteladyinthehood Says:

    I made some of this yesterday, it was so good! (probably not as good as your moms but it was finger lickin’) especially with white beans and mashed taters. I think when you come home you should retire and write a cookbook..(I think people have told you this before) you could call it Rantilcious or something. Kinda like Paula Deen meets hhmmm..Satan? You would have a cult following! And before you balk at Paula – she loves her some bacon AND some buttah…just sayin’…(and the comments on this one were so funny)

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