This iconic Texas dish boasts steak that is crunchy on the outside and tender on the inside and always served with a peppery cream gravy and mashed potatoes. We wanted to master this recipe and bring it into every home cook's repertoire.
Why This Recipe Works
Many recipes for Chicken-Fried Steak called for using cube steaks, which are cut from the round and put through a tenderizing machine that makes small, cubelike indentations. Unfortunately, overzealous supermarket butchers often mangle the job, so we knew we needed a different cut of meat. In the end, we settled on inexpensive but flavorful sirloin tips. To tenderize the steaks, we borrowed an idea from the cubing process and scored the meat on both sides, then bashed the tips with a meat mallet until they were thin. For an ultra-crunchy coating that stayed put, pounding the seasoned flour into the steak with a meat pounder was key. We ditched the deep-fry method we’d been using in favor of a shallower fry, since submerging the coated meat in deep fat trapped moisture and prevented it from evaporating, resulting in sogginess.