Have you ever wondered how chopped meat, minced meat, aka hamburger elevated to the term steak in certain recipes? And in this instance Salisbury steak. I was intrigued, so I checked around and here’s what I found.
“…Minced or ground beef like Salisbury steak in the United States, similar foods already existed in the culinary tradition of Europe. A collection of ancient Roman recipes that may date to the early 4th century, details a preparation of beef called isicia omentata; served as a baked patty in which minced or chopped beef is mixed with pine kernels, black and green peppercorns, and white wine, isicia omentata may be the earliest precursor to the hamburger.
Coming from this history is the Salisbury steak, which is usually served with a gravy similar in texture to a brown sauce. Invented by Dr. James Salisbury (1823–1905), the term Salisbury steak has been used in the United States since 1897. Dr. Salisbury recommended this recipe for the treatment of alimentation (digestive problems).” Wikipedia
Leave it to the Romans yet again, to create a food used in abundance today. 🙂
If you ask me, these Salisbury patties just look like misshapen hamburgers. Did Dr. Salisbury think that if he changed the shape of the hamburger that his patients would be more inclined to eat them? Are the ingredients in these so-called “steaks” that different from a good old-fashioned hamburger patty that any fast-food drive-thru or restaurant sells really do possess curing ingredients for digestive problems?
To answer some of my questions, I found this from Quora:
“By convention, a Salisbury steak is formed in a shape that loosely imitates a steak, whereas hamburgers are usually round or square. By convention, a Salisbury steak is served with gravy and mashed potatoes and no bun, whereas a hamburger is served in a bun as a sandwich.”
And more from another source on Wikipedia:
“(Dr.) Salisbury saw beef as an excellent defense against many different physical problems. He suggested that Salisbury steak should be eaten three times a day, with lots of hot water to cleanse the digestive system.”
Salisbury steak three times a day would be a lot more than I would want to eat. The ones I made were very tasty though and I highly recommend one for lunch or dinner occasionally. But three times a day? No thank you Dr. Salisbury!
This recipe is perfect comfort food, it’s economical and easy to make.
One pound of hamburger makes four steaks.
Cooking in the gravy.
Serve over noodles, mashed potatoes, polenta, or rice.