Swiss Steak was a staple in my home growing up...it was one of the few meals that my mother felt comfortable making - that and Shepard's Pie, which I still refuse to make. I never cared for it much due to the overcooking of all of the vegetables in the dish. I absolutely hate mushy vegetables, and unfortunately my mother liked to cook the hell out of all of 'em.
This recipe is very traditional, and rib-sticking good...but I've changed it up just a bit so that the peppers remain peppers, and don't become mush-meal. Novel idea, right?
4 pieces of cubed steak*
3 tbsp flour
1 tsp dried mustard
salt and pepper
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 cans of whole or stewed tomatoes, with their juice
1 large green bell pepper, cut into strips
1 onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
water, if needed
In a small bowl, combine flour, mustard and salt and pepper. Combine. Lay out cube steak on a piece of plastic wrap. Lightly sprinkle meat with 1/2 of flour mixture. Use the tenderizing part of a kitchen mallet to pound steaks, so that the flour becomes incorporated in the steak. Repeat with opposite side, using the rest of the flour.
Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet. When hot, carefully place prepped steak across the bottom in an even layer. Cook for 7 minutes on each side, until steaks are browned and completely cooked through. Add tomatoes, their juice and garlic, reduce heat and cover for 1 1/2 hours - turning the meat occasionally. (The tomatoes will break down the meat making it fork tender.)
Add onions and peppers to the hot skillet, and gently stir so that the tomatoes and vegetables combine. Add water, if necessary. Cook for about 7-10 minutes, until the onions are translucent and the peppers are crisp-tender. Serve alongside some creamy mashed potatoes or egg noodle pasta. It's one of our favorite comfort meals.
I totally smother my potatoes with the tomato mixture...
*You can make your own cube steak with the use of a kitchen mallet. It's a great way to get that evening frustration out!