The weather is rapidly turning ugly and cold, with wind and rain. The type of weather that makes one wish to huddle in front of the fireplace with a cup of tea (lemon, honey, and a tot of bourbon) after a filling meal of comfort food.
And speaking of comfort food, I desire an old lair dinner, tender burgers seared and then braised in a rich and flavorful gravy, served over mounds of fresh mashed potatoes, and smothered in lakes of the gravy. Served with a salad and freshly baked bread, this is a meal to feed even the most ravenous denizens.
I’ll take the following note:
I prefer to make my own mince, whilst store-bought is made from trimmings in the butcher shop, (does one know WHAT trimmings, or WHEN they were trimmed?) By producing your own, one knows the quality of the source and can control the fat percentage. Whilst this seems a bit overly complicated, it is quite simple.
- Clean everything (hands, knives, sheet pan) BEFORE and AFTER.
- Select your source cuts
- Chuck roast will tend to the perfect 80/20
- For a richer grind, short rib
- For a leaner grind, round.
- One can mix to adjust the ratio.
- Cut them to ~ 1″ chunks
- Freeze them for ~ 30 minutes
- Grind in batches in a food process
- Use the pulse function and work in one-second pulses, checking after each pulse.
- Depending on the chunk size, amount of freezing, and your food processor, 10-20 pulses.
- Do not overcrowd the food processor.
Salisbury steak is a dish originating in the United States and made from a blend of ground beef and other ingredients and usually served with gravy or brown sauce. It is a version of Hamburg steak.
United States Department of Agriculture standards for processed, packaged “Salisbury steak” require a minimum content of 65% meat, of which up to 25% can be pork, except if de-fatted beef or pork is used, the limit is 12% combined. No more than 30% may be fat. Meat byproducts are not permitted; however, beef heart meat is allowed. Extender (bread crumbs, flour, oat flakes, etc.) content is limited to 12%, except isolated soy protein at 6.8% is considered equivalent to 12% of the others. The remainder consists of seasonings, fungi or vegetables (onion, bell pepper, mushroom or the like), binders (can include egg) and liquids (such as water, milk, cream, skim milk, buttermilk, brine, vinegar etc.). The product must be fully cooked, or else labeled “Patties for Salisbury Steak”.
(see my prior comments on ground beef)
One trick to be noted as you mix the ground beef mixture, work in one direction; this will help avoid breaking the protein chain bonds between the egg and the beef, resulting in better texture and structural integrity.
Now about that cup of tea.
Salisbury Steak and Gravy
- 1 lb Ground Beef Lean, or grind your own, see notes
- 1 ea Egg Jumbo
- 2 tbsp Minced Onion Dried
- 2 tbsp Tomato Ketchup
- 2 tsp worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp Mustard Dijon
- 1 cube Beef Bouillon
- 1 tsp Dried Parsley
- 1 tsp Dried Oregano
- 1/2 tsp Salt Kosher, of course
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper Fresh Ground
- 1/2 tsp Granulated Garlic
- 1/2 tsp Dried Basil
Mushroom and Onion Gravy
- 12 oz Mixed Mushrooms Washed, sliced 1/4"
- 1 ea Onion Large, Peeled, Sliced 1/4"
- 6 tbsp Butter Unsalted
- 3 tbsp neutral oil
- 4 tsp Minced Garlic 4 large cloves
- 1/4 Cup AP Flour
- 4 cups Beef Stock Low Sodium
- 3 tbsp worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp Mustard Djion
- 1 tsp Dried Parsley
- 1/2 tsp Dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp Dried Thyme
- Add all the steak ingredients to a large bowl EXCEPT the ground beef.
- Whisk together with a fork until thoroughly combined.
- Add the ground beef and combine with your hands.
- Divide the mixture into 4 equal portions, and pat firmly into oval patties around 3/4”-inch thick.
- Make a shallow depression/dimple in each patty so the outer border is about a ¼ inch higher than the middle.
- Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sear the patties on each side for about 3 minutes total.
- Remove the patties to a plate and reserve.
- Working in batches, add the mushrooms to the skillet in a single layer over medium-high heat.
- Stir to coat the mushrooms in the drippings, adding 1 tbsp of butter, if needed. Cook for 2-3 minutes per side or until browned. Remove to a plate, repeat with the rest of the mushroom.
- Add the onions and 1-2 tbsp of butter if needed, sautee for 2-3 minutes to soften
- Reduce heat to low, add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds. Add flour and cook for 1 minute, scraping up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan.
- Slowly whisk in beef broth and all remaining gravy ingredients. Whisk until most of the lumps are gone.
- Add the partially cooked patties back to the skillet, and nestle them into the gravy.
- Bring to a simmer over high heat then reduce to medium. Cook for 5-7 minutes or until the internal temperature of the patties reaches 160 degrees F, stirring occasionally around the patties. If the gravy thickens too quickly, add additional broth.
- Once the steaks are done, stir in the mushrooms, and heat through.
- Taste, season, and balance flavor.
- Cube your portion of dead cow into 3/4 – 1″ chunks
- Spread onto a sheet pan and freeze for 30 minutes
- Grind up in either a grinder or a food processor
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