Thursday, January 05, 2006

Who put the Swiss into Steak?

I recently developed this obsession with Swiss steak. Maybe it's because I was rifling through someone elses cookbook on Christmas morning and the recipe caught my eye. Maybe it's because I remember it was one of the dishes prepared by one of the sisters in that movie A Thousand Acres. Sort of a disturbing post-modern version of King Lear set in the American Heartland... except in this story King Lear screws his daughters. Yes... disturbing to say the least.

Maybe that's why I don't like Swiss Steak, but more likely, every time I was exposed to it at school potlucks or block parties it was always the version made with Campbell's Cream of Mushroom soup. Now, I'm not necessarily dissing canned soup. I'd eat it if I was stuck at home during a natural disaster for months under a quarantine, and it was the last can of food in my cupboard. I'd rather eat fresh durian or braving the stench of the freshly peeled fruit just to get a bit of the sweet tender fruit. It's no wonder that some hotels in Asia forbid you from taking the fruit up to your room. Though honestly, I should really give Swiss steak a better break. I found a recipe below which uses mushrooms and tomatoes instead of mushroom and cream gravy. It sounds very much like a recipe for flank steak I remember enjoying as a child.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Swiss steak is a method of preparing meat, usually beef, by means of rolling or pounding, and then braising in a cooking pot, either on a stove (cooker) or in an oven. The name does not refer to Switzerland, but instead to the process of "swissing", which refers to fabric or other materials being pounded or run through rollers in order to soften it. Swiss steak is typically made from relatively tough cuts of meat, such as the round, which have been pounded with a tenderizing hammer, or run through a set of bladed rollers to produce so-called "cube steak". The meat is typically coated with flour and other seasonings and served with a thick gravy.

These Swiss steak recipes call for them to be baked in the oven, but you can
also prepare them in the above mentioned ways.

For the first recipe you will need the following ingredients:

* a covered baking dish,

* 2 pounds of steak,

* salt, pepper,

* garlic powder,

* 1 onion sliced,

* 4 ounce can of drained mushrooms, and

* 1 15 ounce can of tomato sauce.

The first step is to cut your steak into serving sizes, season the steaks
with the salt, pepper, and garlic powder.

Place the steak into a baking dish top with the onion slice.

Now, pour the mushrooms and tomato sauce on top. Kind of level the
ingredients and bake covered for 1 ½ hours at 350 degrees. This recipe can also
be prepared on top of the stove just as easy. Just remember to check on it and
be sure that the liquid is not evaporating.

You can always add just a bit more tomato sauce or even a small amount of water
if needed.


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