Chicken Fried Steak at Honey’s, you are quite the Southern dish!
Aw, jeez—you know I came to Philadelphia all the way from sleepy Sherman, Texas, with owner Jeb Woody. When he moved to Philadelphia and craved the CFS of his childhood, all he got was processed, freezer-to-fryer imitations. It was his duty to bring real, southern Chicken Fried Steak to the North if only so he could enjoy his own breakfast.
So what makes you the best CFS in these parts?
Simplicity. My only ingredients are flour, salt, pepper, egg and, of course, steak. Jeb uses a strip steak run through a machine that punctures and pulverizes to tenderize. I’m then flattened out pancake-size with a mallet before I’m dipped in batter. CFS is the London Broil of the South, so it needs a bit more care.
And the batter?
Even simpler! Flour, salt and pepper are already mixed in one bowl. Scrambled eggs in another. I’m dipped in the eggs, then the dry mixture, back in the egg, the flour and then the egg once more. I’m then deep fried to order.
Made to order every time?
Oh yes, honey. Every single time. Even at noon on a Sunday, at our busiest, I’m hand battered.
You can be served for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Which do you prefer?
Well, Jeb likes me served as breakfast but not necessarily for breakfast: any time of day with two eggs over easy, gravy and Honey’s biscuits, which are dense, not flaky, and a bit sweet.
What do you have to say to Northerners who aren’t partial to the taste of Chicken Fried Steak?
If it comes from IHOP, it ain’t Chicken Fried Steak. Do yourself a favor and try the real thing before you make up your mind.
Honey’s Sit ’N Eat, Fourth and Brown sts. 215.925.1150. honeys-restaurant.com
PW's Taste of Philly 2014