If you’ve never tried chimichurri before, you must stop and make it now! Sorry to be bossy, but it packs mucho flavor and livens up whatever it’s drizzled over. Try it on roasted vegetables, grilled meat or fish, scrambled eggs, even over noodles for a cold pasta salad. But if I had to chose, it’s at its best when paired with a nice steak.
So what exactly is this chimi stuff? It’s an Argentinian condiment (think their version of ketchup) made with lots of parsley and garlic, red wine vinegar and olive oil, plus some red pepper flakes for a bit of heat.
If you have several red wine vinegars on hand (which I realize most people don’t, including myself at the moment) use your best one. I first made chimichurri when I was the lucky recipient of a bottle of specialty red wine vinegar from Zingerman’s. I was trying to figure out how best show off its tang and subtle sweetness and I discovered chimichurri.
As I mentioned earlier, chimichurri is at it’s best when paired with a nice steak. I’m currently loving boneless ribeyes from our local butcher – but any steak will do – rubbed with some olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper. No marinade required. Just grill them up, slap them on your plate, drizzle with some chimichurri and you have summertime grilling perfection.
Chimichurri with Steak (makes about 1/2 cup chimichurri, enough for 4 steaks with leftover sauce)
Note: Unused chimichurri can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 3 days at which point the olive oil will start solidifying. However, if desperate you can heat it with very low heat (I use the microwave) until the oil melts. But I’m sure your chimichurri will be long gone before you reach that point.
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3-4 cloves)
1 bay leaf
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup (60 ml) olive oil
1/2 cup (30 grams) flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
Stir the red wine vinegar, water, garlic, bay leaf, salt, chili flakes and pepper together in a small-medium bowl (it has to be large enough for you to be able to whisk in the olive oil). Drizzle in the olive oil, while whisking continuously. Stir in the parsley. Let sit for at least 30 minutes at room temperature before serving.
Rub the steaks with a bit of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. If using a grill, grill until your desired doneness (I prefer medium-rare). If you don’t have a grill, no worries. Just heat a large, heavy saute pan over high heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil. Place steaks in the pan and cook 2-3 minutes per side until it reaches desired doneness. Be sure to turn the stove fan on, as it may get hot and smoky. Serve each steak drizzled with a tablespoon or two of chimichurri.
Adapted from Epicurious