So it is with me and chicken fried steak. A seventh-generation Texan on my mother’s side, I’ve been eating chicken fried steak my entire life—as have my parents and grandparents before me. No matter how progressive I consider myself in my more indulgent moments, I can’t be progressive when it comes to CFS. It should be pounded thin like a milanesa, surrounded in a crispy batter, and served with cream gravy. On the side. Always on the side. This is how I was raised to eat chicken fried steak, and how I’ll raise my kids to eat it one day too.
Gravy on top of a chicken fried steak only makes the crunchy batter soggy before you have a chance to get even halfway through the dish. It enrages me when I order a chicken fried steak and see it bouncing out of the kitchen covered in gravy; I can already picture the batter becoming gravy-logged and sodden before I even take a bite.
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