goHUNT recipe: Elk fried steak with mashed potatoes

Recipes from Joseph Romano: Part 3 of 3

For the third wild game recipe, I will explain how to make elk fried steak with mashed potatoes, using the meat from the same bull elk I harvested in Montana earlier this year. Fried steak is a classic American meal and is a great dish for any time of the year.


Elk fried steak with mashed potatoes

Elk fried steak with mashed potatoes 
* Makes 6 servings 
Total time: 1 hour 
For the steak 
3 lbs.cube steak
1 1/2 cupswhole milk
2large eggs
2 cupsall-purpose flour
2 tspseasoned salt
Freshly groundblack pepper
3/4 tsppaprika
1/4 tspcayenne pepper
To tastekosher salt
1/2 cupcanola or vegetable oil
1 tbspbutter
For the gravy 
1/4 cupall-purpose flour
3-4 cups whole milk
1/2 tspseasoned salt
To tastefreshly ground black pepper
For the potatoes 
1 lb.potatoes
1/2 cupmilk
2 tbsp.butter

Quick tips:

*Get the pan extremely hot for the roux
*Roux should be a paste consistency
* Amount of milk for the gravy may vary to get the desired consistency
*Be sure to thoroughly dry cast iron pots to prevent rust


For the steak:

1. Take the elk meat and flatten it with a meat tenderizing hammer.

Tenderizing elk meat

Meat should come out fairly flat and will be wider than when you started. 

Tenderized elk meat

2. After breaking down the meat with the hammer, next take a meat tenderizing blade and thoroughly tenderize every part of the elk meat once more.

Bladed meat tenderizer

3. Begin with setting up an assembly line of dishes. Mix the milk and eggs in one dish, flour mixed with the seasoned salt, 1 1/2 tsp. of black pepper, paprika and cayenne in another, and the meat in a third. Have one clean plate at the end for the breaded meat.

Breading and batter for the elk meat

Tenderized elk meat ready for bread batter

4. Work with one piece of meat at a time. Sprinkle both sides with kosher salt and black pepper, then place it in the flour mixture. Turn to coat. 

Adding elk meat to flour

Place the meat into the milk and egg mixture, turning to coat.

Adding floured elk meat to the batter

5. Finally, place it back in the flour and turn to coat. Place the breaded meat on the clean plate, then repeat with the remaining meat.

Adding elk meat back into the flour

6. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add butter. Drop in a few sprinkles of flour to make sure it's sufficiently hot. When the butter sizzles immediately, you know it's ready. It should not brown right away, if it does, the fire is too hot.

Frying the elk meat

7. Cook three pieces of meat (at the same time) for about two minutes until the edges start to brown. Remove meat and place on a paper towel-lined plate. To keep warm, cover lightly with another plate or a sheet of foil. Repeat until all meat is cooked.

Fried elk steak

After all meat is fried, pour grease into a heatproof bowl. Without cleaning the skillet, return it to the stove over medium-low heat. Add 1/4 cup of the grease back to the skillet and allow it to heat up.

Mashed potatoes:

Cut the potatoes and place into a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook for 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Drain potatoes and mash with a potato masher. Meanwhile, heat the milk and butter in a small saucepan. Add the mixture and season with salt and pepper. Mix together with a spoon.

Making mashed potatoes

For the gravy:

8. When the grease is hot, sprinkle the flour evenly over the grease. Using a whisk, mix the flour with the grease to create a golden-brown paste.

Making the roux

Add more flour if overly greasy, but add a little more grease if it becomes too pasty or clumpy. Keep cooking until the roux reaches a deep golden-brown color.

Making the roux

9. Pour in milk, whisking constantly. Add seasoned salt and black pepper to taste and cook while whisking, until the gravy is smooth and thick, (5-10 minutes). Be prepared to add more milk if it becomes overly thick. Be sure to taste to make sure gravy is sufficiently seasoned.

Adding milk to the roux

10. Once the gravy is finished, carefully add a few spoon fulls of gravy to the fried elk steaks and mashed potatoes.

Adding gravy to the fried elk meat

11. Serve and enjoy.

Finished fried elk steak


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