Ham Steak with Red Eye Gravy


Sometimes you remember a meal from childhood that you have completely forgotten about. Then you just cannot seem to stop thinking about it until you make it. I grew up in the South. We ate a lot of pork. This was usually paired with biscuits, potatoes, and some form of gravy. The one dish that I have not had since that time is ham with red eye gravy. My mimi (grandmother) cooked this for either breakfast or dinner. This was in the recent Cook’s Country issue and once I read it, I could not stop thinking about it. I remember my mimi using coffee in the gravy, but not onions. The gravy was usually thinner than normal gravies. It was also somewhat salty, but that might have been from the country ham. Anyway, try this with cheddar cheese biscuits and some potatoes. It took me right back to the hills of Tennessee.

Ham Steak with Red Eye Gravy


  • 1 (1 1/2 pound) thick bone-in ham steak
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 slices bacon
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
  • 1 tsp all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 2 tsp instant espresso powder


  1. Pat ham dry with paper towels and season with pepper.
  2. Cook bacon in 12-inch skillet over medium heat until crisp.
  3. Remove bacon from skillet (leaving bacon fat behind) and reserve for another use.
  4. Add ham to skillet with bacon fat and cook until well browned on first side.
  5. Flip ham and cook on second side until lightly browned.
  6. Transfer ham to platter and tent loosely with aluminum foil.
  7. Add onion to now-empty skillet and cook until just beginning to brown.
  8. Stir in flour and cook for 15 seconds.
  9. Whisk in broth and maple syrup, scraping up any browned bits.
  10. Bring to simmer and cook until mixture is reduced and slightly thickened.
  11. Off heat, whisk in butter and espresso powder.
  12. Season with pepper to taste.
  13. Discard any juices on ham platter.
  14. Carve ham steak into 4 equal portions.
  15. Pour red-eye gravy over ham.
  16. Serve with biscuits and potatoes of your choice.

1 Comment

Filed under What's for Dinner

One response to “Ham Steak with Red Eye Gravy

  1. Sonya

    My opinion isn’t very valuable because I’ve never had this dish until tonight, but I do love Cook’s Country and usually their recipes are foolproof (99.9% of the time), but this “gravy” was so thin to me too! Seemed odd to me for gravy, but I guess I don’t know about gravy and learned something new! It wasn’t a repeat for my husband or I. But I still love Cook’s Country and I’m sure that if you grew up with this it would be a winner 🙂 My family’s personal favorite recipes from this issue are the Pork Pernil and leftovers into Philadelphia Roast Pork Sandwiches, California Fish Tacos, Pesto Potatoes, Pasta with Spinach and Tomatoes; Chorizo, Parsley and Pepper Jack Muffin Tin Frittatas (say that 10 times fast!), Cherry and Goat Cheese Couscous Salad, Chorizo and Orange Couscous Salad, Cilantro and Pepita Couscous Salad, Feta and Olive Couscous Salad, Strawberry Pretzel Salad, Fudgy Tar Heel Pie, and the Peach Cobbler for Two. Still have many recipes left to try 🙂

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