Friday, November 18, 2011

Salisbury Steak: An American Classic

Served here with potato pierogies and gravy
Now that the sun is setting earlier and the temperature is chilly, what better time than now to break out the comfort foods! I wanted a burger tonight, but I also wanted pierogies, but not both together, too much bread. I decided to make a Salisbury steak, complete with pan gravy and served with pierogies on the side (and broccoli). I think the usual sides that go with this comforting classic are mashed potatoes and corn (at least I feel like it should be corn!). You could certainly serve with boiled or baked potatoes, mac n cheese or even something different like pierogies like I did tonight.

I always repeat myself, and once you try it you will see why I do this. When cooking meat in a pan, there will be stickage and brown stuff on the bottom of the pan, DO NOT WASTE THIS! This will make the base for your gravy and believe me it will be the best damn gravy you've ever tasted. We will get into this a little more later.

So pick your meat and lets start!

1 lb ground beef, shaped into 4 patties (can use any meat you want, mixed or not)
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp seasoned salt
1tsp pepper
half packet of onion soup mix

1 or 2 cups Chicken stock
1/2 chopped onion
1tsp dijon mustard
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp flour

Mix the meat with the spices or onion soup mix. Both variations are delicious. Shape meat into four patties and place in a hot pan sprayed with cooking spray. You'll want to brown these on each side. If there is a lot of fat leftover, remove the patties and pour out the fat or you can skip the extra oil and use this to brown your onions and flour.

Return the pan to the heat and add the olive oil and onions. Saute for a couple of minutes. Next add the flour and stir. It may disappear and look like its browning on the bottom of the pan, its ok, just add your stock and scrape up all the brown off the bottom of the pan. Return the steaks to the gravy and cook longer until the meat is no longer pink, and add the mustard and stir. If you want more gravy then just add more stock.

If the gravy looks too thin, mix a tiny bit of corn starch, maybe a teaspoon with a bit of water to make a paste and add it to the gravy, stirring constantly. It should thicken immediately.

The reason that you want to use the browned stuff in the pan is because this is where all of the flavors are, highly concentrated and caramelized and you don't want to waste flavor, right? I recently made adobo roasted chicken for chicken soup and I made a stock with the caramelized bits off the bottom of the baking pan, and YUM is all I have to say about that.

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