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Why Salisbury steak?

Salisbury Steak with Mushroom Gravy

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By Abby Simchak
From Fine Cooking #131, p. 89

Though many of us think of it as a mainstay of school cafeterias and frozen dinners, the Salisbury steak was actually borne of a more lofty notion: health food. Henry Salisbury (1823-1905), an American doctor and dietitian, believed he could help Civil War soldiers overcome digestive ailments by eating a diet that consisted largely of what was essentially a hamburger without the bun (Salisbury was not a fan of starch). The name Salisbury steak was first recorded in 1897, but it didn’t become popular until World War I, when anti-German sentiment had some Americans looking for a replacement for the word hamburger. These days, the term usually implies a bunless beef patty (or beef mixed with pork) served in a rich gravy. It’s a favorite weeknight dinner at my house.

Get the recipe: Salisbury Steak with Mushroom Gravy


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