Tag Archives: tenderized

Old-Fashioned Swiss Steak

14 Jan
Old-Fashioned Swiss Steak

Old-Fashioned Swiss Steak

I don’t use my pressure cooker nearly enough, but during my winter staycation I used it twice! Once for this flavorful, tender Swiss steak and another time for a spicy Mexican stew/soup. (Look for that recipe in an upcoming post.)

Have no fear if you don’t own a pressure cooker, as these recipes can also be made in a Dutch oven. The cooking times will be much longer over the stove or in the oven. That is the beauty of a pressure cooker — dinner can be served in about a half hour for something that can typically take up to two hours!

I call this “old-fashioned” because it reminds me of the Swiss steaks my mom used to make for us growing up, and I imagine her mother also made this meal. It was common practice for depression-era cooks to tenderize tough cuts of meat with a heavy meat mallet. Pre-tenderized top or bottom round steak are now widely available, but if you have a good old-fashioned heavy meat mallet, you could certainly tenderize the steaks yourself.

Somehow I failed to get a photo of the actual tenderized steaks without the sauce, but yes, there is a steak under all those vegetables! My family was duly impressed with this old-fashioned meal, and I hope you will be too!

Prepping Swiss Steak Ingredients

Prepping Swiss Steak Ingredients

Old-Fashioned Swiss Steak
Adapted from Alton Brown/Food Network

1 to 2 pounds tenderized top round steak (or cube steak)
Ground black pepper
Mrs. Dash or salt
Flour to coat the steaks
2 tablespoons grapeseed or vegetable oil
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced celery
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1 tablespoon tomato paste (freeze the rest for another use)
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes (I used fire-roasted with garlic)
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
1 1/2 cups beef broth, homemade or low-sodium

Cut the tenderized steak into serving size portions. (That would be three in this household.) Season the meat with ground black pepper and Mrs. Dash or salt, to taste. Dredge the steaks through flour and set aside.

Add the oil to the pressure cooker set on medium-high heat, and cook the steaks, one at a time, on both sides until browned. Remove each to a plate and set aside. Add a little more oil, if needed, in between steaks.

Sauteing the Veggies after Browning the Steaks

Sauteing the Veggies after Browning the Steaks

Add the chopped vegetables and cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir until combined. Return the steaks to the pot, submerging them in the liquid as best you can.

Tomato Sauce Mixture with Steaks

Tomato Sauce Mixture with Steaks ~ Yes the steaks are under there!

Secure the lid, add the pressure rocker, and turn the heat to high. When the pressure regulator begins to rock, reduce the heat to medium so that it rocks steadily for 15 minutes. At the 15-minute mark, remove from heat. Let the pressure reduce on its own before removing the lid. Serve steaks over cooked rice with a side salad or vegetable.

Note: If you don’t have a pressure cooker, you can make this in a Dutch oven. Follow the same steps, except cover the Dutch oven and cook on the middle rack in a 325-degree oven for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!


Texas Chicken Fried Steak

9 Sep

YUM! Here is what we had for dinner tonight. I posted this over a year and a half ago, and I think I’ve only made it once or twice since then. Indulgent, but oh so satisfying! Here is the recipe in case you weren’t a follower that long ago:

Chicken Fried Steak with Cream Gravy, Yumm!

Amazingly, my daughter announced last night she would be glad to help make dinner tonight. My plan was to teach her how to make some good old-fashioned chicken fried steak with cream gravy, mashed potatoes, and green beans. I even bought some cubed steaks a couple of days ago because I was craving some good Texas food.  (I haven’t tenderized a round steak in years for this. It doesn’t help that the head of my cheap wooden tenderizer flies off every time I use it. My mom has this fantastic solid metal one, which I’m sure she got from her mother.)

The recipe came from my mind, because any true Texan just “knows” how to make it. Since my daughter was born and raised in Oregon, I guess this osmosis effect never transferred this particular ability to her. Unfortunately, when I told her it was time to make dinner, her idea of “helping” to make dinner was to peel the potatoes and put them in the pot to boil. I practically had to force her to watch me bread the steaks, and off she went on her iPod Touch to chat with her friends. No matter, she’ll come around eventually.  This recipe is for two, but it is easily multiplied. This is an “eyeball” recipe, as amounts really depend on how many steaks you are cooking and how much gravy you want to go with them.

Chicken Fried Steak with Cream Gravy

2 cubed steaks, or round steaks tenderized
Black pepper
Cayenne pepper
Salt to taste
1 egg
Oil for skillet

On a plate or in a bowl, mix together about a half cup of flour and the seasonings to taste. I liberally add a lot of black pepper. Since my no-salt hubby is gone, I added a little bit of salt tonight! Beat the egg with some milk in a bowl. Dredge the steaks in the flour mixture until coated, then dip in the egg mixture to coat. Dredge the steaks once again in the flour until coated well  (your fingers will get nice and clumpy at this part) and set aside on another plate. Reserve the extra flour mixture for the gravy. Heat about a quarter- to half-inch of oil in a heavy skillet, preferably cast iron, until hot, but not smoking. Very carefully set each steak in the hot oil with a spatula.  It will splatter, so watch out!

Let the steaks sizzle in the oil for about four or five minutes, until you see red juice bubbling out of the top. Carefully slide the spatula under each steak and gently flip them over. Fry for about another five minutes until crispy brown. Remove the steaks from the skillet and drain on paper towels.

Sizzling Steaks

For the cream gravy, pour all but about two tablespoons of oil out of the skillet and make sure the crispy bits stay in the pan. Add about two tablespoons of the reserved flour mixture to the skillet and stir and mash it down to remove lumps until just starting to brown. Slowly add about a cup of milk, stirring constantly, until the gravy starts to thicken. Add lots and lots of more pepper at this point, and salt to taste. Continue stirring until the gravy is the consistency you want, adding more milk or water if it gets too thick.

Put the chicken fried steaks on each plate, pour a generous amount of cream gravy over them, and serve with mashed potatoes and more cream gravy, and a vegetable of choice. I’ve always enjoyed green beans with this meal. Now that’s a taste of Texas, isn’t it?

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