When I think of classic dishes growing up, Salisbury Steak was always among them. I did a little bit of research into the history of the recipe finding that the term “salisbury steak” has been used in the U.S. since about 1897. Created by Dr. J.H. Salisbury who was an early proponent of the low-carb diet for weight loss.
Ours is an even healthier version that would make Dr. Salisbury proud. Instead of ground beef, we used coarsely chopped mushrooms, quick-cooking oats and breadcrumbs as the main ingredients. Traditionally, Salisbury Steak is topped with either sauce or gravy, I opted for a compromise – tomato onion gravy.
There are just a handful of ingredients that make up this flavorful version. The process itself is really not much different than making a meatloaf except that we shape the patty into that classic Salisbury Steak form.
To begin, we saute onions, celery and carrots in a small amount of oil until they are tender and golden. This will become the base for our tomato gravy, so we want them to caramelize which adds even more flavor.
While the vegetables are sauteeing, chop the mushrooms (with a sharp knife, not a food processor). We want there to be texture, but no large pieces. In a separate saute pan, add a small amount of oil and 1 small finely diced onion. Cook for a few minutes and then add the mushrooms. Immediately season with salt, as it will draw out the moisture. Continue to cook until the onions soften and all of the moisture evaporates. Remove from the heat and add the garlic.
While the mushroom mixture cools slightly, create a mixture of 2 Tbl Ground Flax + 7 Tbl of water and allow to sit in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
Combine the mushroom mixture with the flax mixture and add the remaining ingredients. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or even better, overnight. It should look something like this…
Using damp hands, firmly compact and form into that signature Salisbury Steak patty shape. Bake at 425 degrees for 15-20 minutes taking care not to let the bottom get overly brown. Once they start to firm up, you can carefully flip halfway through the cooking process.
While the patties are baking, let’s finish the tomato onion gravy. To the now sauteed vegetables, add 1 Tbl of flour and cook for 1 minute. Add the broth, red wine vinegar, tomato paste, brown sugar and season with salt and pepper. Finish with fresh parsley.
Serve atop garlic mashed potatoes with your favorite green vegetable.
Just look at that texture! The sauce is sweet, tangy and full of flavor.
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FOR THE TOMATO ONION GRAVY:
- 1-1/2 tsp Vegan Margarine
- 1-1/2 tsp Oil of your choosing
- 1 medium Onion sliced
- 1/2 Carrot small dice
- 1 Celery Stalk small dice
- 1 Tbl Flour
- 1-1/2 C Vegetable Broth
- 1 Tbl Red Wine Vinegar
- 1-1/2 Tbl Tomato Paste
- 1-1/2 tsp Brown Sugar
- Salt and Pepper to taste
FOR THE MUSHROOM STEAK:
- 1 Tbl Oil of your choosing
- 1 lb Mushrooms (such as Button Baby Bella or a mixture)
- 1 small Onion finely diced
- Garlic minced
- 1/2 C Quick-Cooking Oats
- 2 Tbl Parmesan (a vegan option is GO Veggie! though there are several brands available)
- 1/2 C Italian Bread Crumbs
- 1/8 tsp Oregano
- 2 tsp Worcestershire be sure it's vegan-friendly
- 1 tsp Grainy Mustard
- 1/4 C Fresh Parsley chopped
- 1 tbsp Ground Flax Seeds PLUS 3 Tbl Water (a/k/a flax "egg")
Begin by sauteeing onions, carrots and celery in 1-1/2 tsp each margarine and oil.
Prepare mushrooms by removing stems, wiping clean.
Using a knife, not a food processor, chop mushrooms into a fine dice. No large pieces.
In a skillet on medium-high heat, add the oil, onions and chopped mushrooms.
Season immediately with salt and pepper. The salt will draw out the moisture in the mushrooms. Continue to cook until all moisture has evaporated.
Remove from the heat and stir in the minced garlic. It will cook a little from the residual heat of the pan.
Prepare the flax "eggs" by combining the ground flax with water and allowing to rest in the refrigerator. It will become gelatinous and be our binder.
Add the flax mixture along with the remaining mushroom steak ingredients. Combine with a fork until coarse and crumbly.
Season with salt and pepper.
At this point the mixture should hold together. If it seems a bit dry, add a Tablespoon of water (or you could add a splash of almond or coconut milk).
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours. Preferably overnight. This will allow the moisture to permeate the dry ingredients and the flavors to meld.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Form the mushroom mixture into patties. Bake for approximately 15-20 minutes, flipping halfway through. They should be firm, but tender and lightly golden on each side.
To complete the tomato onion gravy, add the remaining ingredients , stirring to combine until hot and bubbly.
Serve atop garlic mashed potatoes with your favorite green vegetable for a side.
Serves: about 4 "steaks"