This Chipped Beef Recipe is Known as S.O.S By Veterans
Veterans and military families alike can tell you one thing: shit on a shingle makes for a delicious lunch or dinner. While it may not sound appetizing, this chipped beef recipe loaded with creamy gravy is comfort food on a plate. Atlas Obscura shares the unofficial term became popular during WW II when the military dish was served to soldiers. The first recipe for the creamed beef on toast comes from the 1910 Manual for Army Cooks and uses beef stock, evaporated milk, parsley, flour, butter, and dried beef. During World War II, soldiers used chipped beef in place of dried.
Once home from the war, soldiers craved the shit on a shingle recipe and shared it with their families, creating home recipes that got passed down. Instead of serving this SOS recipe in the mess halls, families enjoyed it around the dinner table. My dad who was in the Air Force shared that this dish brings back memories of his childhood kitchen.
How to Make Chipped Beef on Toast
Chop your chipped beef roughly and set it aside. If you are sensitive to salt, rinse the beef.
Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook the roux for a minute. Whisk in the milk gradually and season with ground nutmeg, ground onion powder, ground garlic powder, a few drops of Worcestershire sauce, and a squirt of mustard. Cook until thick and season the white sauce with black pepper. Stir in the chipped beef and set the heat to low.
Meanwhile, toast your bread. Once toasted, top with the beef mixture and sprinkle with parsley.
You can also make this creamed chipped beef recipe with ground beef, cooking the beef in a large skillet over medium-high heat until browned and no longer pink. Traditionally this hamburger gravy is served on toast but you can serve it over mashed potatoes or use it in a breakfast casserole.
Whether you are a Marine, or in the Navy, this cream sauce is an every day favorite served alongside hash browns.
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