Tender strips of cube steak are dredged, pan fried, then served with creamy gravy that's flavored with roasted jalapenos and garlic. In other words, a plate full of Texas.
I've found a fix for Tex Mex here in Charlotte but have failed miserably in getting my chicken/steak fingers and gravy habit fed. Back home, it seems like every place serves cream gravy alongside chicken fingers for dipping. And the really good ones have steak fingers on the menu, too!
Steak fingers are just strips of chicken fried steak but they are made for dipping and eaten with your hands, just like a chicken fingers. They are tender, flavorful, and, when loaded up with gravy, make your eyes roll back in your head.
This twist throws some roasted jalapeno in the gravy just for kicks. It's not spicy but adds a nice flavor in the background. If you aren't a fan of jalapeno, you can easily leave it out. Either way, the whole pan is downright drinkable.
If you've never tried steak fingers and gravy, add this to your menu!
Steak Fingers with Roasted Jalapeno Cream Gravy
For the gravy:
2-4 jalapenos, stemmed, seeded, and halved lengthwise
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tablespoons bacon grease or vegetable oil
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1.5 cups whole milk
For the steak fingers:
2 pounds cube steak
1.5 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 cup whole milk or buttermilk
salt and pepper
oil, for frying
Place the jalapenos and garlic on a baking sheet and place until the broiler for 5 minutes, or until blackened. Remove from the oven and rub off the blackened skin from the jalapeno and then dice. Mince the garlic.
In a large heavy skillet (preferably cast iron), heat the bacon grease or oil over medium-low heat. Whisk in the flour and cook until fragrant and lightly browned, about 1 minute. Slowly pour in the milk and whisk until thickened, about 2-3 minutes.
Turn off the heat and stir in the jalapenos and garlic. Add salt to taste. If gravy is too thick, add more milk until desired consistency. Set aside - you can reheat on low before serving.
Slice the cube steak into strips and lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Preheat oven to 200 and line a baking sheet with paper towels.
In a shallow bowl, mix together the flour, cayenne, about 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. In a second shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs and milk.
Dredge each strip first in the flour, then the egg/milk, then back into the flour.
In a large heavy skillet (preferably cast iron), heat 1/2 inch of oil over medium-high heat. After about 5 minutes of heating, stick a wooden spoon into the oil. If oil bubbles around the spoon, it should be hot enough.
Add the prepared strips to the pan, being careful not to crowd them, and cook until you see red juices bubbling on top of the meal, about 2-3 minutes. Using tongs, carefully flip them over and cook another 2-4 minutes until lightly browned. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet and slide into the oven to keep warm while you continue cooking the rest of the strips.
Once ready to serve, warm the gravy over low heat and serve alongside the strips.
Source: adapted from The Homesick Texan's Family Table