When I was a kid, a week didn’t go by that cube steak wasn’t served for dinner. To me, those were the best dinner evenings. I would pony up to the table salivating; just waiting for Mom to put the finishing touches on the gravy.
My Mom rarely made the traditional chicken fried steak. You know, the one that everyone thinks of when you say those two words… cube steak. Nope, she was a typical working Mom and cut prep corners when she could. Like seasoning the cube steak and then lightly dusting it in flour and then pan searing in a little oil. When both sides were golden brown, she’d place them on a platter and serve with her pan gravy that was made from beef stock and the pan drippings.
I have to admit, I love a good chicken fried steak and gravy – which is probably one of the most popular recipes for cube steak. I grew up in the South and I’ve had the pleasure of dining on the most succulent and perfectly prepared chicken fried steak. But for a busy weeknight, this quick prep cube steak method is perfect.
Every year we purchase a quarter side of beef and with it comes a lot of cube steak. This is one of those recipes born out of the need to use up all the cube steak in my freezer, while keeping the meal on the lighter side. It was an instant hit at my house. So I decided to prepare it for one of my favorite clients who had been asking for cube steak but couldn’t have the heavy chicken fried steak version. He loved this recipe so much it became a regular on his menu. I love it when that happens.
Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love!
Cube Steak Parmesan
To dress up this dish, I like to serve it over fresh seasonal greens that are tossed with a little good quality olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Makes a lovely presentation and makes me feel a little better about using my abundance of cube steak.
For those who would like this dish wheat free, try dusting the seasoned cube steak in a little corn starch, just to crisp it a bit.
1 1/2 – 2lbs cube steak (if the steaks are large I cut them in half)
Salt and Pepper
All-purpose flour or corn starch for dusting
Oil for pan searing (I like safflower or EVOO)
2 cups of your favorite or homemade tomato sauce
Mozzarella cheese, about 8 slices (part skim or whole milk)
Basil leaves – about 8-10
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
Spring greens tossed with salt, pepper, a drizzle of oil and balsamic vinegar
Pre-heat the oven to 400F.
Season the steaks with salt and pepper and a pinch of dried oregano. Dust the steaks in all-purpose flour or corn starch.
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat and add a few tablespoons of oil. Enough to lightly cover the bottom of the pan. When the oil is hot but not smoking, brown the cube steak on both sides and then transfer to a baking dish or lined baking sheet. Repeat until all the cube steak has been browned. Cube steak is usually very thin so this browning process will most likely cook the steak through. If not, it will finish cooking in the oven.
Place a slice of cheese on each steak and then a basil leaf. Ladle a little sauce over each steak and top with parmesan cheese.
Place the baking dish or baking sheet in the pre-heated oven until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbly, about 10 minutes.
Place your prepared greens on a large platter and then place each of the steaks on the greens. Serve with extra sauce. Sometimes I serve this creamy polenta or gnocchi.
*If using a baking dish you can keep the steaks in the baking dish and serve the greens on the side.