I haven’t been able to find out where this influence sparked from, but most home-style Chinese restaurants in town have “Chicken Steak” in their menus, most probably pronounced the old way of ‘bistik ayam‘. It is very much like Viennese schnitzel, but with butter gravy and side order of homemade french fries, fresh tomatoes, lettuce and cucumber. Also instead of serving them as individual main course, it is served as one of sharing dishes, with steamed rice and other main meals. Can always tell which one goes first. The crunchy chicken and the fries! The sad lettuce is always the last to go. Except when we go with real breathing friends who actually choose lettuce over meat.
It is one of the dish that my mother makes that I have very fond memories of. We had great time in the kitchen last week when she finally showed me how it is prepared.
Prepping the chicken for deep frying, making the gravy, cutting the potatoes for fries – all seemed to be a lot of work, but they are actually very simple.
Chicken Steak with Gravy
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ground white pepper
1/4 cup butter
500 ml water
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar (optional)
1/2 cup canned peas, drained (alternatively, sliced button mushrooms can also be used)
1 whole chicken breast, skinned and boned, flattened, divided into 4 smaller pieces (280 g)
1 tsp all-purpose flour
1 tsp ground white pepper
1 egg white
1 cup breadcrumbs (fine or coarse/panko)
For side dish & garnish
2 medium sized potatoes, peeled, cut into sticks
1 lettuce, washed
1 cucumber, peeled and cut diagonally
1 tomato, cut thinly
In a wok, stir fry flour till the color turn light brown over low heat. Keep stirring to avoid the flour burning from the heat for about 7 minutes. Add pepper and nutmeg. Mix well
Add the butter and quickly stir till all ingredients mixed well for 2 minutes.
Pour water slowly and continuously break any lumps that form. Stir quickly for 3 minutes and season with salt and sugar. Cook till boiling and turn off heat. Add peas
Cover and put aside.
Marinate chicken breast with flour and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Dip in egg white and bread crumbs, deep fry till crunchy and brown, about 5 minutes
For homemade fries
Wash the cut potatoes in salt water for a couple of minutes. Drain and dry on paper towel.
Use the deep-frying oil to fry fries first, then the chicken. That way you can keep the fries from getting bits of burnt crumb on them.
If served on a big sharing plate, cut the chicken into bite size and arrange them on the plate with the garnish. Pour the sauce generously on top of the chicken
Deep fry in hot oil till brown, about 5-8 minutes