Chipped Beef: some old traditions are the best.

February 2nd, 2011 by Daniel Leave a reply »

chipped beef

An introduction to chipped beef

Chipped beef harkens from the days before refrigeration when meat needed to be cured, dried or canned to preserve it until the next hog or steer was slaughtered.  It seems unimaginable to us today to be unable to barbacue steaks or pork cutlets whenever we feel like driving down to the corner market and purchasing our plastic wrapped, already fabricated protein.  This was not always true.

Smoked salmon and beef jerky are the two most popular and well known methods of preserving meat, yet chipped beef in its heyday was universally known around the country.  In military jargon this was called SOS (Shit on a Shingle) because the meat could be dry packed and shipped overseas and then draped over a slab of toast for breakfast.

The recipe for chipped beef varies as you travel across America: at one point many small diners served SOS (Same Old Stuff in more gentile parts of the country) for breakfast, but I will hazard to guess that not many diners are currently serving this meaty dish.  There is a resurgence with the traditional butchery of hogs and cattle and with that movement comes the traditional methods of preparing and preserving the meat.

Chipped beef at The Country Cat is beef brisket that has been brined for five days, then pulled from the brine and sliced thin.  From there the brisket gets dredged in seasoned flour and deep fried until it is golden brown.  The chipped beef is then added to a combination of sweated celery, onions and fennel which has had sufficient chicken stock added to cover the beef.

I wasn’t able to capture the completion of the SOS, but managed to catch the begginning in An introduction to chipped beef.  We haven’t received our side of beef yet this week so when that happens, and when Mike makes the recipe again I will get in there film the chipped beef getting made and upload it up to

Stay tuned!



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