Cant get grandma on the phone? Try these tips from Texas farm kitchens.
Choosing your steak
- Thin steaks (1/4- to 1/2-inch thick) work best for chicken-fried steak.
- Smaller steak pieces are easier to coat and fry, and the crust is less likely to
Preparing your steak
- For an added zing, add cayenne pepper or paprika to the flour, or hot pepper sauce to the
- Most old-timers insist on a cast iron skillet or heavy skillet for frying.
- For extra crispy crust, turn steaks in saltine cracker crumbs following the second
Frying your steak
- Pan-fry in oil 1/4-inch deep when total thickness of breaded steaks is 1/2 inch.
Rule-of-thumb: Oil depth should be one-half the total breaded steak thickness.
- If the oil is smoking, it's too hot and burns the meat. If the oil is too cool, the crust
forms too slowly, absorbs oil, and becomes greasy.
- Gently place steaks in oil to avoid splashing the top. Oil splashes cause patches of soft
- Fry steaks one at a time for best results. Don't let steaks touch when frying two at a
time; steam develops making the crust soggy.
- Monitor oil temperature. The secret is cooking quickly. When steaks are added, oil
temperature drops. Adjust heat slightly upward if needed. Readjust heat downward to regulate
even frying temperature.
- Don't cover the pan while cooking; steam forms creating a soggy crust.
- Serve steaks immediately. Crust becomes soft when held.
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