When I was a child, one of the great joys of my life was going to Joeís Diner and getting a root beer in a frosty mug. If it was a very special day, we would buy one of their huge Italian Steak Sandwiches and split it three ways. That low-slung white building is long gone, but the memory of that sandwich lingers.
As I grew older, and was living on my own, from time to time, I would buy some Italian steaks and fry them. Then, I would create my own sandwich. The Italian Steaks were fairly easy to find. Itís more difficult now, but one local Missouri meat producer, Scimecaís, still has them to order. However, I was challenged to make my own version. This is what we call an Italian Steak Sandwich in the Greater Kansas City Metro.
Italian Steak Sandwich Recipe
This makes three extra large or six medium sized sandwiches.
3 cube or minute steaks-5 ounces each
1 cup flour
ľ cup milk
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
2 teaspoons of Italian seasoning
1 cup Italian style bread crumbs
1 teaspoon of dried Parmesan cheese
Oil for frying
Spaghetti sauce or mayonnaise
Sliced lettuce, tomatoes, onions, pickles
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.
Using scissors or a sharp knife, cut the cube steaks in half, lengthwise. In three shallow bowls prepare your breading. In one bowl add flour. In another bowl, add the egg, milk, pepper, and garlic salt. Whisk until the egg mixture ingredients are combined. Using the third bowl, rub the Italian spices between your hands to crush them into the bowl. Add the Italian bread crumbs and mix them together with the spices and Parmesan cheese.
I laid out a piece of waxed paper and covered it with some bread crumbs. After breading the steaks, I place them here for about 10-15 minutes before frying them
Iíve been breading both hands for years when I put a crumb coating on anything. But with the wet hand/dry hand technique, I didnít have a crumb buildup on my fingers. Try it, I think you will be pleased. Here is what to do.
Choose a hand to be your wet hand and the other hand will be your dry hand. Then, dip the steak into the flour with your dry hand. Shake the steak gently to remove the excess flour. Put the steak into your wet hand and dip it into the egg mixture. Then, place the steak into crumb mixture with your wet hand. Use your dry hand to pile crumbs onto the steak. With the back of your hand, about where your fingers attach to your hand, firmly press the crumbs into the steak. Use your dry hand to remove the crumb crusted steak from the crumbs. Place it onto the waxed paper.
Let the breaded Italian Steaks stand on a platter or piece of waxed paper for about 10-15 minutes to allow the breading to adhere to the meat.
Pour oil into your skillet ľ to Ĺ inch deep, depending on the thickness of your steaks, and heat on high until a small piece of meat that you place in the skillet sizzles. Carefully add the Italian steaks. Donít crowd them, They need at least Ĺ inch between them. Lower the heat to medium. Turn when the side that is up has breading that looks moist. The breading will go from looking like crumbs to a moist pink look. Be sure to use your spatula to loosen the meat when you turn it or take it out of the oil. You donít want to leave half of your good breading in the pan! It takes 4-5 minutes per side to cook the Italian Steaks. Cook them until they are completely golden brown on each side.
Remove the steaks to a jelly roll pan that has been covered with foil. If you like cheese, cover each steak with provolone cheese. Put the pan into the oven while you are preparing the bread and condiments.
Use very fresh bread from the bakery. I like a soft French roll or hoagie bun. One variation uses spaghetti sauce as a condiment, while the other uses mayonnaise. Choose your favorite spaghetti sauce or mayonnaise to slather on the bun. (There was a local restaurant that served the Italian Steak Sandwiches with barbecue sauce. But folks in Kansas City will put barbecue sauce on almost anything!) Add your choice of lettuce, tomato, and red onions. If I have the version with mayonnaise, I also thin slice a garlic dill pickle onto the bun. Serve these hearty sandwiches with a salad and fruit for a complete meal.
Since I became the BellaOnline Sandwiches Editor, I have wanted to share an Italian Steak Sandwich with you. There have been several recipes that came close, but didnít quite hit the mark. This one does, in my opinion. What do you think? Please let me know in the BellaOnline Sandwiches Forum. If you have variations, donít be shy. Share them with us in the forum.