From the name, many would think that Swiss steak refers to a dish that originated in Switzerland. However, the name ‘Swiss’ refers to a cooking process known as swissing which involves tenderizing the meat by pounding or rolling it.
After the meat is tenderized, it is typically braised in a cooking pot of stewed tomatoes, mushrooms, and seasonings. In the Deep South, the dish is called smothered steak. No matter what you may call this dish, it has an interesting and delicious history as a dinner staple.
Although many wonder what the origins of the recipe maybe if it is not from Switzerland, no one is really sure. We can trace its roots as far back as 1915 when it first appeared in a cookbook although the original dish didn’t feature tomatoes. Those weren’t added until the 1930s.
From there, the dish rose in popularity due to the fact that a recipe for the meal was featured by Reynolds, the aluminum foil company. They added the recipe to advertise how lining a pan with aluminum foil made cleanup a breeze.
Swiss steak is often considered a comfort food. It can be made using round steak, chuck or beef shoulder, or even cube steak. It makes a perfect meal when served with mashed potatoes on the side and many say it tastes even better after spending a day in the refrigerator. A great time to make this recipe is during the colder winter months as comfort food seems to lift everyone's spirits.
There are many different, slightly varied Swiss steak recipes out there. This Swiss steak recipe is a simpler, more straightforward version. Some other recipes call for the use of Worcestershire sauce and various other chopped vegetables. This is the perfect recipe for those carnivores that don’t want to fuss with vegetables. Easy to make, all you have to do is tenderize the meat, heat it, add onions and tomatoes, and bake.
Then take it out of the oven to serve your family a meal they are sure to enjoy.
- 1/2 cup sifted flour
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 (2-pound) round steak (1 1/2-inch thick)
- 2 Tablespoons oil
- 1 small onion, minced
- 2 cups diced tomatoes
1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Mix flour, salt and pepper. Sprinkle mixture over steak.
2. Pound mixture into steak with a meat mallet or potato masher. Pound evenly until the meat is about 1/4 inch thick. Cut into 4 serving-size pieces.
3. Heat the oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the meat and cook, turning once, until browned on both sides (4-6 minutes).
4. Transfer meat to a shallow baking dish.
5. Add onions to tomatoes, stirring to combine. Pour over the steak. Cover the dish with foil.
4. Bake at 350 degrees F until the meat is tender when pierced with a fork, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©AS Foodstudio/Shutterstock.com.