Country-Fried Steak Fingers with Cream Gravy
AgVantage Naturals is working together with local growers and producers to meet the challenging needs of the gluten-free and allergen-free communities. All of their flours and mixes are carefully sourced to bring safe and delicious products for your whole family to enjoy... including this delicious comfort food recipe by chef Alli!
Note from Chef Alli: If you're looking for THE BEST Country-Fried Steak Fingers with Cream Gravy, you’ve arrived! This recipe incorporates a reverse-cook method that transforms chewy beef minute-steaks into steak fingers that melt in your mouth. Perfect tender and juicy beef on the inside with a crispy-crunchy coating on the outside.Heavenly....especially when slathered with cream gravy!
6 large minute-steaks (or round steak that you pound into tenderized minute-steaks)
Vegetable or canola oil + 2 Tbs. butter for searing the steak fingers
2 cups buttermilk (or 2 cups milk to which 4 Tbs. cider vinegar has been added to sour it)
1 1/2 - 2 cups cornstarch
2 cups Ag-Vantage Spice Mix (this is a pre-seasoned breading mix))
1/4 cup oil and pan drippings leftover from frying the steak fingers (if you have more oil in your skillet when ready to make gravy, remove the excess; if you have less than 1/4 cup oil, add what you need.)
1/4 cup Ag-Vantage Spice Mix (this is a pre-seasoned gluten-free breading Mix)
12 oz. can evaporated milk
1 - 1 1/2 cups whole milk (if you opt not to use the evaporated milk, you may substitute 2 - 2 1/2 cups cream in place of both the evaporated milk and the whole milk. Either way you get a super creamy gravy!)
Prepare the Steak Fingers
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
Place the uncooked minute steaks into a 9 x 13 baking dish; add 1/2 cup beef broth, covering the pan tightly with foil.
Place the baking dish of meat into the preheated oven on the center rack; bake for approx. 1 1/2 hours or until the minute steaks are fork-tender when tested. (Don’t be concerned with how much the minute steaks may have shrunk during the cooking process. This is normal and okay.)
Remove the cooked minute steaks from the oven and let them fully cool. (Removing them to a plate or platter helps them cool quicker.) When the steaks have cooled, slice then into fingers, approx 1 - 1 1/4 inches wide. (Or as wide or narrow as you prefer.)
Prepare the breading station by placing a couple of large sheets of parchment paper or foil over your work surface, close to your stove or cook top.
Place 1 shallow bowl and 2 pie plates onto the parchment. Fill the shallow bowl with the eggs and buttermilk; beat with a fork or small whisk to combine.
Add the half of the cornstarch to one of the pie plates, then place half of the breading mix into the remaining pie plate. (This way you can work in batches as needed with the cornstarch and breading mix.)
Take each steak finger and dip it into the egg mixture, then into the cornstarch. Now dip the steak finger into the egg mixture once more, then into the breading mixture. Remove each breaded steak finger to a plate in a single layer.
Meanwhile, in a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium high heat, add about 1/2” - 3/4” of oil, along with the butter. When the oil is nicely hot, add the breaded steak fingers to the hot oil; frying them until nicely golden brown, approx 2-3 minutes per side.
Remove the country fried steak fingers to a paper towel-lined plate, keeping them warm.
Prepare the Cream Gravy
Now it’s time to make the cream gravy - yay! Over medium heat, using about 1/4 cup of the leftover oil with drippings (from frying the steak fingers), add 1/4 cup of the breading mix; cook this mixture for 1 minute, whisking often.
Now, completely remove the skillet from the heat, and slowly whisk In the evaporated milk until the gravy is smooth and thick. **Please Note: This step of removing the skillet from the heat while whisking the first bit of liquid into the cooked breading mix (or flour) is one of the best and little-known secrets to making lump-free gravy, FYI.
Now return the gravy to medium heat, whisking in the remaining cup of milk. (If the gravy is too thick as it cools, add more milk, as needed.)
Serve the warm country fried steak fingers smothered with cream gravy, alongside your favorite mashed potatoes (with more gravy!) and green beans or asparagus.
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