As a child, I believe that Chicken Fried Steak was my favorite Country Style Dinner........maybe because Mom's Beef Roasts were a bit like Jerky......we'd have to chew,....and chew,....and chew!!!!!! Garlic was never included in Mom's recipe. In the mid west, Chicken Fried Steak was a salt and pepper thing,....period! The addition of garlic and a bit of cayenne really perks of the old standard. Using fresh garlic in the egg wash allows the meat to soak up all the goodness of the garlic. Cooking the garlic makes it mild, yet still a forward flavor. Get Fryin'.
1In a large bowl, whisk the egg with the crushed garlic. Add the pieces of cubed steak, which have been cut in to desired portions. I like two smaller pieces per person, as opposed to one big piece. Coat both sides of meat with the egg wash. Make sure that the garlic gets distributed evenly. Let soak for 5 to 10 minutes.
2While the meat is absorbing the egg wash, mix the breadcrumbs, flour, salt, pepper(s) in a separate bowl.
3Dip the egg washed meat, one piece at a time, in the seasoned flour/breadcrumb mixture. Coat both sides of meat. Place on a tray lined with waxed paper. Repeat, until all the pieces of meat are well coated with the breading. Dump any extra flour/breadcrumbs on top of all the pieces of meat on the tray. Turn meat to coat with some of the extra breading.
4In a large fry pan, heat the oil over a med/hi heat until a smoking point is almost reached. The oil needs to be hot.
5Fry the steaks for 8-9 minutes, turning a few times. Fry in 2 batches if your pan does not hold all of the steaks at once. Keep cooked steaks warm in a 225 degree oven while you make the gravy.
6For the gravy, use the same pan that you fried the steaks in, reserving 3 1/2 Tbsp of the oil/drippings. Using med/hi heat, add the 1/4 cup flour to the oil and whisk to make a roux. If desired, brown the flour a bit. Add the warmed milk and bring to a boil, stirring constantly with a whisk or wooden spoon. Add the seasonings and simmer a couple more minutes to thicken a little more.
7Serve the steaks immediately with some mashed or boiled potatoes, topped with the gravy. Add a vegetable of choice. I prefer Broccoli.