I hope that my daughter will love to cook, like I do. Good east Texas southern cooking is what I know from my Mom. It is a tradition that has been passed down in our family. I can remember wanting to be in the kitchen helping her and wanting to learn. I guess it worked because today, I think I'm a pretty good cook. Mom gets excited when I tell her I've tried something new or an old family recipe. She smiles and my heart knows that she is sure the legacy is being passed on. Her mother was a great cook, but did not really want her in the kitchen growing up. BUT my father's mother was a fabulous country cook and she loved to show my mom how to do it. There is great story that my father tells about my mother's first attempt at making gravy. Apparently they had to cut it with a knife. We all laugh now because no one makes gravy like her, it is awesome.
Now, my daughter loves to be in the kitchen with me, she is the "egg breaker" and number one "stirrer" as she says. It is a wonderful time for us to prepare meals together and I feel like I am giving her a gift that she will pass along as well.
So in honor of my mom's great cooking, I will include an old family favorite that I made for the first time this week, for my family. It is a recipe I had not thought about in years, but Mom recently made it and we were there to enjoy it and I thought... WOW that is awesome... just like I remember it. I need to add this to our meal list. So, here it is, to share with your family.
Just to warn you... I cook by feel and by sight... so not all my measurements will be exact... but get over it. That is the secret to great country cooking.
Swiss Steak or Pepper Steak (it depends who you ask)
1 1/2 lbs round steak (tenderized)- cut in pieces (around the size of your palm)
1- 14oz can of stewed, diced tomatoes
1 green bell pepper -cut in thin slices
1 medium onion- cut in slices
2 tbs minced garlic
enough flour to lightly coat the meat
salt/ pepper/ garlic powder to season flour
Combine salt/pepper/garlic powder and flour in a dish and dip the meat in the mixture just to coat. Not real heavy. Then pan fry the meat in a heavy skillet ( I used my iron dutch oven) in canola oil. You don't need a lot of oil. Brown the meat on both sides. Remove meat. Drain the oil, but keep all the cruchy pieces that fell off the meat in the pan. Next, put the meat back in, add the tomatoes, peppers and onions and the garlic. Also, take the tomato can and fill it with water and add it in. Now, stir the bottom of the pan and get all the good stuff that stuck to the bottom loose and let it come to a boil. Then turn the heat down and simmer for a while. I did for 30 -40 minutes. You want the meat really tender.
Serve with good ole' mashed potatoes. Now... doesn't that sound like good comfort food? Well it is!