Chicken Fried Steak with Country Gravy
and Garden Fresh Tomatoes
On a recent trip to Village Inn for Ben Retherford's farewell breakfast, I was tempted by the Chicken Fried Steak. It has long been one of my favorite breakfast foods and on this particular morning, it was screaming my name. It was a moment of turmoil for me, I had the devil, disguised as a Chicken Fried Steak, on one shoulder saying, "order me, I taste so good, it will be worth it." On the other shoulder I had a little angel disguised as a cave man chanting, "Keep It Paleo!" I went back and forth and decided to "Keep It Paleo", but made a promise to myself to create a Paleo version of the Chicken Fried Steak. So this is what I came up with...
I started with one cup of raw Macadamia Nuts and one cup of raw Walnuts.
I prepared a spice mix of chili powder, black pepper, granulated garlic and Kosher Salt. I cracked two eggs into a bowl and plated up three cube steaks.
I blitzed the nuts in the blender until they looked like this and then transferred them to a large, shallow bowl for breading.
I beat the spice mix together with the eggs, added the cube steaks and then mixed well to coat the steaks on all sides.
I then chopped two cloves of garlic and started them in a pan with two tablespoons of pork fat.
Once Garlic was toasted, I added one pound of Italian sausage and seasoned it with black pepper and red chile.
I cooked the sausage through while leaving some large chunks. I then added the cream from two cans of coconut milk, reserving the water to a glass and placing in the fridge for future thirst quenching.
Once this cooked through, it was too thin for my liking. I added a few handfuls of almond flour to thicken it to a nape (nah-pay) consistency.
I set this on the back burner over low heat and prepared a my pot for pan-frying the steaks. I heated half bacon fat and half olive pomace oil and, when the oil was up to temp, I dipped the steaks in the nut crumbs and fried them off. If you have a deep fryer filled with coconut oil, this is a great time to use it...
Because my steaks were quite thick, the nuts were toasted before the steaks were cooked through. So, I placed them on a paper towel lined plate in a 350° oven to finish cooking them. I like my Chicken Fried Steak cooked between medium well and well done.
While the steaks were finishing, I minced some garden fresh chives, reserving four, four inch tips of the best looking chives of the bunch.
And chopped up some tomatoes that I stole from my nieghbor's garden.
When the meat was done, I brought the country gravy to simmer and added the chives.
I stirred them in and I was ready to plate. I placed one steak on a plate, covered it with country gravy, topped that with a handful of tomatoes and garnished it with the reserved chive tips.
I added another handful of tomatoes to mine to help cut through the richness of the nuts and coconut milk. It was delicious!! I'll definitely make this one again.
If you make this, use less salt, double up the tomatoes and use a deep fryer if you have one. Please share pictures of your creation and as always, this is only a guideline. Be creative, have fun and "Keep it Paleo!"