Minute steak, elevated
February 1, 2016
If you are of a certain age, you remember when minute steaks were all the rage and a hugely popular item on grocery store meat counters.
Minute steak, for the uninitiated, is simply round steak, which is a pretty tough cut of meat, that’s been run through a jacquarding blade a time or two to cut some of the long muscle fibers as a means of tenderizing it. I never could tell that it worked that well, though I guess it’s marginally more tender than a plain round steak that isn’t braised a couple of hours.
When I get my quarter-steer every fall, it always contains several packages of “tenderized round steak,” which is nothign more than old-fashioned minute steak. It’s what I use to make rouladen, beefsteak pounded thin, and wrapped around a brat and a pickle spear, then braised. And the other day, I made what would have been braciole had I put it in tomato sauce, but I didn’t. More on that later.
So, this version of minute steak. I thawed two packages of steak, as Child C and her hubby were coming to eat and retrieve AGC2 on Sunday. So I got up early Sunday morning and commenced to prep.
First step was to pound the tenderized steaks thinner, and this is where I found a new use for the new cleaver. The backside of that baby, which weighs better than two pounds, is about a quarter inch wide. It’s significantly heaver than my meat mallet. So I used the backside of the cleaver, and it did an admirable job. It just got promoted to a two-task tool in the kitchen.
Then I made a filling. Heated some olive oil, toasted a little garlic confit in it. Would have sauteed an onion, but SIL2 doesn’t like onion, so I used onion powder instead. Grabbed a bag of bread crumbs from the freezer, and put those in to toast.
I thought. And then I thought, “Self? Those breadcrumbs look awfully brown.” And self tasted said breadcrumbs, and replied, “That would be because they’re graham cracker crumbs, idiot.”
So I tossed out that skilletful and started over.
This time, I got bread crumbs in successfully and browned them a bit. Took it off the heat, added grated parmegiano and some onion powder, and stirred it all up, set it aside.
Got out my kitchen twine, cut a length about two feet long for each roll. Salted and peppered each one, put about 1/3 cup of the filling on top and spread it out. Rolled them up, and tied them at each end and in the middle.
Then I browned them in a skillet in olive oil, and when they had a nice sear, I added about 2/3 cup of red wine and a cup of beef broth, clapped a lid on it, and it went into a 275-degree oven, and I went into the shower to get ready for church. Nice to know dinner would be ready when I got home.
Had I put it in tomato sauce, it would have been braciole. I thought about doing that, but I had originally planned pot roast, but changed that when I discovered that, apparently, all my roasts are at the very bottom of my freezer, and my hands got too cold to try to find them. So I used the same braising liquid I’d have used for pot roast.
We had it with purple hulled peas and sweet corn from the freezer, as well as mashed potatoes for SIL2. No pics of the finished meal because we fell upon it like a pack of starving wolves. But it was a Sunday dinner that couldn’t be beat.
You ‘n y’mama ‘n ’em are welcome to drop by one of these days for church and come home with me for Sunday dinner. Sometimes it’s dinner, and sometimes it’s just a snack, but I’ll not send you away hungry.