Rob Carson: Once again my name is Carson and today, we are making chicken fried steak, two ways. The first way we did with mashed potatoes and white gravy. Now we are going to make it into a great sandwich with homemade onion rings.
What I am going to need right now is fairly simple actually. This is my friend Kathy Madison's recipe for onion rings and they are absolutely amazing. What I have here is, this is a vidalia onion. I have used a yellow onion or a vidalia onion. I have soaked it in buttermilk for 24 hours. So that's what that is right here. They have been soaked in buttermilk. It helps sweeten the onion, takes some of the bitterness out of it, tenderize this a little bit.
I have got panko bread crumbs. I have got regular bread crumbs. The recipe can also call for an equal part of cracker meal, but I am going to just go with panko and regular bread crumbs. I also need a couple of cups of just regular flour, salt and pepper. I am doing kaiser rolls and then these are my veggies for the sandwich.
Alright, first thing we are going to do is we are going to drain the buttermilk off of the onions. The reason we are going to do that is because we are going to use the buttermilk to dredge the onion rings in, instead of doing eggs which you do a lot of times in your bread stuff. We are just using the buttermilk and it works really nicely. It makes the onion rings really light and crispy. I am just going to use equal parts of panko and bread crumbs. You can add a little bit of corn meal or cracker meal, if you want to, to this mixture. I am also going to take a little bit of salt and pepper and add it to the flour. I am going to take the onion ring and the buttermilk, then you are going to dredge it in the flour. You are going to put the onion ring back in the buttermilk, then you are going to dredge it in this. This is a messy process, it is not a lot of fun, but when you get done with these onion rings, you are going to not believe how good they are.
I am an onion ring aficionado. I have had onion rings everywhere. These are some of the better ones I have ever had, I love them. They are not terribly thick, like the really hardy ones, but they are thick enough. They are breading pretty and they are nice.
Okay, so I have finished breading my onion rings, they are excellent. I would mention that if you can get cracker meal, use cracker meal with the panko bread crumbs or the regular bread crumbs, but these are going to be great as well. We have got the oil at 350 degrees. Let's go ahead and take my lid off here. You are not going to throw them all in the same time, just a few at a time.
Again as with the chicken fried steak, when it floats, they are done. I love that sound, I never get tired of it. I have turned them just because I want to make sure that both sides get evenly cooked, because when they are floating, it's not completely submerged in oil. So I want to make sure that they are nice and even. These are already floating, so you want to watch the brownness, of course. These take about 3 minutes or so.
Again, this is a perfect frying temperature, 350 degrees is perfect. You don't want it any hotter than that, trust me. Anything past 350 degrees, you risk fire because it will catch fire. These look so pretty, don't they? Here they are, look at that. They are nice. Alright, we are going to continue cooking these onion rings. When we are all done in 10 minutes or so, we are going to plate it up. Chicken fried steak and onion rings, doesn't get any better than that?
This is the way that I did it, when I was growing up, when I worked at a truck stop on I80 in Iowa. What I would do is butter each bun, put it on a hot griddle surface. We are going to not do that today because what we have got here is bad enough for us. I just use good old-fashioned yellow mustard. You can use a little bit of hot sauce, you can use probably a barbecue sauce. I am just using ketchup and mustard, good old standard, kind of heavy speckle, come on now.
Let's go ahead and grab my chicken fried. Oh my goodness, let's get this one right here. My tomatoes, my red onion, you got to have a red onion. That's the way you do it. You can use iceberg lettuce, I am using romaine today. There we go, there is the sandwich. Let's throw some onion rings on there too. There you go my friends. Chicken fried steak sandwich, second way, with homemade onion rings. Enjoy it!