Three packages of “cube steak” were included in our recent grass fed beef share and I was a bit stymied by them. The frozen hunks looked a bit like ground beef, but once I defrosted them I realized that they were actually four solid masses. I consulted the great google machine and the wizard within told me that cube steak is a cut of beef, usually top round or top sirloin, tenderized by fierce pounding with a meat tenderizer, leaving cube shaped indentations – hence the name. It is also called “minute steak” by some because it cooks very quickly.
By either name, it is still not a cut with which I am familiar. (What can I say? I guess my tastes run toward the finer end!) But didn’t take me long before I realized that it would probably be best pan fried and my husband gave me the idea to try to paleo-ify the “chicken fried steak” served at the fine restaurants found along interstate highway throughout the country.
The “paleo-ifying” process begins…
I had several challenges here. Of course, grains are out, so clearly the copycat recipe linked above was not much help. I found a few paleo recipes for chicken or “country” fried steak in books and on the internet, but they relied on nut flours, which I don’t currently eat. Then I remembered some delicious chicken tenders I recently made from a recipe by Allison Nicols of the Frisky Lemon that use ground up plantain chips as a major component of the breading and decided to apply that same principle here.
The other challenge was to make a tasty gravy that didn’t include either grains or dairy. For that I turned to a technique for simmering vegetables in stock and then blending them together in a high powered mixer from Elana’s Pantry. My version for this dish omitted the garlic though and added in some sliced mushrooms.
Unfortunately for my friends on healing diets, this dish is probably not going to work for most of you. While the breading is nut free and I didn’t include any nightshades in the seasoning, it does rely on eggs to bind it, making it a no-go for strict AIP. The starchy plantains and tapioca flour are both forbidden on SCD and GAPS. And onions are a major high FODMAP offender, so the gravy would not be suitable for anyone following a low-FODMAP diet. Additionally, the breading is pretty high in carbs so folks following low carb or ketogenic diets are not going to be able to embrace this dish either.
Notes on ingredients and where to get them
For frying, you definitely want to use coconut oil due to its high smoke point and other health benefits.Print
Other posts in the Grassfed on a Budget series:
Other ways to prepare cube steak
- Easy Pan-Fried Cube Steaks – Our Small Hours
- Low Carb Country Fried Steak – Living Low Carb One Day At a Time