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Chicken Fried Steak Fingers with Ragin’ Cajun Pepper Gravy

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Welp, I have finally made a believer out of my hubby on just how incredibly flavorful, and *TENDER!*, Chicken Fried Steak Fingers with Ragin’ Cajun Gravy can be!! I battled him for years on this, (as evidently it wasn’t one of his mom’s better dishes), and hers always turned out tough and dry. That can surely, of course, have you believing that you don’t like them! But these. Are neither! Absolutely thrilled that he finally LOVES them. Believe me, next time I’m DOUBLING this!

Such a simple and easy dish, but oh so comforting and addictive that you can enjoy either as an appetizer, or add a side dish or two, and you’ve got yourself one southern-style feast!

You just simply start with “cubed” steak. Cubed simply means that “steak”, round steak usually, is run through a tenderizer by the butcher to make the lesser cut of meat super tender and thin, so that it cooks in minutes without having to slow cook it. It always comes out tender if you just don’t overcook it!

 

 

I simply pat the meat dry first, then cut the meat into strips, dredge them into seasoned flour, then into a spiked milk and egg bath, then back through the flour again. The trick to this, is to always shake off any excess flour and egg bath as you go. That way the coating won’t get too thick and gummy.

And the bits won’t all fall off when you go to fry it and just end up inedible, burnt, blackened, teeth-shattering pebbles on the bottom of the pan!

 

 

 

I always prep the meat first, then heat up the oil. Letting the coated meat rest while the oil heats up, also helps the breading to stick! It’s wonderfully seasoned and flavorful! You don’t want to lose any of it!

Also, make sure that your oil and butter is nice and hot. The meat should sizzle immediately when placed into the pan, and don’t cook them for more than 1 – 1 1/2 minutes per side. And NEVER. I mean NEVER pierce them with a fork to turn. Always use tongs. Piercing makes the juices run out and the oil run in. Not good! Unless you like dry, greasy meat.

 

 

 

 

Once they’re all fried and placed onto a rack over a baking sheet (no paper towel to steam that gorgeous breading and make it mushy!), you pop it into a preheated 200º oven to keep warm while you make the gravy!

*I actually like to make the gravy the day before, or earlier in the day, using all butter instead of the pan drippings, but you can make this however you want to!

 

 

 

 

So while those gorgeous golden steak fingers stay warm in the oven, whip up the gravy! If you’ve made it ahead of time, you can fry up a batch of homemade french fries if you’ like! I did, and served a nice little cup of homemade cole slaw to go alongside, too!

 

 

Would you like to Pin this one? You’re more than welcome to Pin,
Print, or Save any that you like to remind yourself to fix this soon!

 

 

 

You wanna talk about a midwestern/southern-style feast!

Ohhhh man.

Like running into your best friend when you were 10!!

 

 

 

 

 Grab one while they’re hot, dunk, and enjoy!!!

 

 

I only made a single batch, (fried in two separate batches), but next time, and OH HELLZ YEA there WILL be a next time, I’ll have to go back to making a full, 2 pound batch! The hubs all but INHALED them. Gosh I hate it when I’m right. 😉

But just thankful that it’s another one of my favorites that I have finally convinced him to give a second chance! Hope you enjoy these, too! Make a batch (or three!) this weekend!

 

 

*These Steak Fingers can be served by themselves
with the Cajun Gravy for Dipping as an Appetizer,
or make it a “Platter” and serve with any of my Side Dishes such as:

 

Copycat 5 Guys Fries
Sweet Creamy Southern Cole Slaw
Old-Fashioned Mustard Potato Salad
Blue Ribbon Barbecued Baked Beans
Best Creamy Homemade Mashed Potatoes

*If  Gravy is not preferred for dipping, might I suggest:

Best Homemade Ranch Dressing
Creamy Honey Mustard Dressing
Thick, Rich & Chunky Blue Cheese Dressing
Mississippi Comeback Sauce
Balsamic Espresso Coca-Cola Barbecue Sauce

 

Chicken Fried Steak Fingers

Ingredients

  • 1.5 - 2 pounds beef cubed steak
  • Salt (I prefer seasoned)
  • Pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3 extra large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Frying oil (such as peanut, canola or vegetable)
  • 1 3/4 cups milk (whole preferred)
  • 1/4 cup cream

Instructions

  • Cut cubed steak into 1-inch strips. If you freeze the meat for about 15 minutes before hand, it will be easier to slice.
  • Season steak fingers with a sprinkle of salt and pepper and set aside.
  • On a large plate, stir together flour, cayenne pepper, garlic powder and about 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and 1 teaspoon seasoned salt.
  • In a wide shallow bowl, whisk together eggs with the buttermilk and an additional pinch of salt and pepper.
  • First dredge the steak fingers in the flour, then dip in the egg mixture, and then dredge in the flour again. Set aside on a wire rack as you bread the remaining steak fingers. Set aside the remaining breading flour.
  • In the mean time, heat oil to approximately 2 inches high in a deep cast iron skillet or other large skillet or dutch oven to about 350F.
  • When the oil is almost heated, I like to give the steak fingers one last light dredge in the flour so they have a nice crisp coating and then fry about 5 - 6 at a time (you don't want to overcrowd the pan) until they are golden brown on each side. You'll want to flip them once brown on one side.
  • Place fried steak fingers on an absorbent paper-lined oven-safe dish. You can keep them in the oven at about 200F or the warm setting while you fry the rest of the fingers. I prefer this to covering with foil as they can get soggy.
  • Once all the steak fingers have been fried, either pour out the grease from the pan into a bowl, or grab another large skillet and add 4 Tablespoons (1/4 cup) of the oil you fried the steak fingers in. You can also use butter or bacon fat. If you get any crumbs of the fried flour in the oil, don't worry as that just adds more flavor.
  • Add 4 Tablespoons of the seasoned flour mixture from breading (or fresh flour) to the oil and whisk together over medium-low heat until a paste forms, adding more flour if needed. Continue cooking the paste until it's a darker golden brown, about 2 minutes or so, to cook out the flour taste.
  • While whisking constantly, pour in the milk. Continue whisking thoroughly to get any lumps out. Let simmer until gravy thickens and then whisk in the cream. If the gravy is still too thick for your liking, add in a touch more milk or cream until your desired consistency.
  • Season gravy to taste with salt and pepper. I like to also add in a pinch of cayenne and garlic powder.
  • Serve warm steak fingers alongside gravy for dipping. I like to round out the meal with mashed potatoes, a green veggie and Texas toast or biscuits.

  •  

    For the Cajun Pepper Gravy to dip ‘n dunk!

     

    Ragin' Cajun Pepper Gravy

    Ragin' Cajun Pepper Gravy

    Ingredients

    can sub bacon fat but will have a predominant bacon flavor (*

    • 1/4 cup (4 Tbl.) butter, (*if using ALL butter - NO pan drippings - use 1 stick)
    • 1 large clove garlic, finely minced
    • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1 cup chicken broth
    • 2 1/2 cups whole milk, (more at the end if needed - just a small splash if too thick)
    • 1 tsp. cajun seasoning such as Slap Ya Mama
    • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
    • 2 1/2 tsp. fresh cracked or coarse ground black pepper
    • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
    • 1/8 tsp. ground dried rubbed sage
    • 1/8 tsp. onion powder
    • 1/2 Tbl. sour cream, (whisk in very last after removing from heat)

    Instructions

  • Add pan drippings and butter (*or all butter) to frying pan, and melt over medium heat. Sauté minced garlic for 1 minute.
  • Whisk in flour until smooth and no lumps. Whisk or stir for 5 minutes to cook out raw flour taste. Do not brown, adjust heat if needed.
  • Add the broth and milk into a glass measuring pitcher, and slowly pour it into the flour mixture, whisking constantly, to keep lumps from forming.
  • Stir in rest of seasonings (except sour cream).
  • Bring to a boil, stirring, reduce heat and simmer until thickened. About 4 - 5 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and stir or whisk in the 1/2 Tbl. sour cream well, until creamy and no tiny lumps remain. If too thick, add a small splash of milk to thin. (If you accidentally add too much milk, simmer for a minute or so to re-thicken. No harm done.) Taste and add more salt and/or pepper to taste.
  • Pour into small individual finger bowls and serve hot, garnished with more pepper if desired.
  • Notes

    *If making ahead of time, rewarm in microwave, stirring once in awhile. If too thick, add a little milk, 1 Tbl. at a time, until desired consistency. *Do not thin until after warmed, as gravy will be extra thick when cold, and thin out as it warms.


     

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    Kelly

    Friday 25th of August 2017

    You're very welcome, Donna!! :)

    Donna

    Wednesday 16th of August 2017

    These are amazing. I look forward to your wonderful recipes. Thank you for sharing with us.

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