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We were grilling some T-Bone steaks for Sunday dinner and I realized that after making several recipes using fresh herbs, I had some in the crisper drawer that needed to be used up. This was a great opportunity for me to share with you how to make chimichurri sauce! If you have never heard of this awesome fresh/raw sauce that hails from Argentina, then you are in for a real treat. This is kind of like a relish that you use on grilled meats like our steak, but it has lots of other uses as well!
Chimichurri is well known in south America but mostly in Argentina and Uruguay. This is a recipe that comes from the Basque region of Europe. While the Basque's are known to be "Europe's Indians", they are known to be a nomadic people who are skilled in sheep herding and other agrarian skills. They are known to live in many places throughout Europe as well as south, central and North America where they immigrated in the early 1900's.
Heat olive oil in a heavy bottomed skillet over medium high heat.
Place all ingredients into the food processor and blend until smooth and creamy.
Serve over grill meat such as steak, chicken, pork or shrimp.
Toss fresh vegetables and roast.
Toss quartered potatoes with sauce and roast until crispy.
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3 cloves garlic minced
2 tablespoons shallot minced
Juice and zest of one lemon
¼ cup white or red wine vinegar
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
½ cup fresh parsley
½ cup fresh cilantro
½ cup fresh basil
½ cup fresh dill
½ cup fresh oregano
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
As for this sauce. Yes, simmering meatballs is one way to enjoy it. But think of all the possibilities! You can use The research I did for this dish revealed that the etemology of the word "chimichurri" loosely translated means: "A mixture of several things in no particular order." I kind of love that. Rick said "so its like a dump sauce" and it really is.
The best part of chimichurri is that the recipe can be adjusted, not only in volume but to suit the ingredients you have on hand. You can make this with nothing more than parsley, garlic, onion, vinegar and oil. Simple! You can mix up your herbs and add more or take away from. I had these on hand, but next time maybe it will just be parsley and mint or cilantro and basil or whatever I have on hand. No need to go searching for specialty items. Remember the Basques would have used what they had available to them. They were a nomadic people and used what they had within reach. One day it may have been field greens and the next wild sorrel or tarragon.
You also can switch up the citrus and use orange instead of lemon or even lime If you don't have a cupboard full of exotic vinegar, use what you have! Apple cider vinegar will work fine, a splash of balsamic or in a pinch just plain distilled white. Don't worry about this being perfect because no matter what you mix up it will be perfect for you and what you are able to create!
I hope you give this chimichurri sauce a try and I hope you love it!
1 Cup good quality mayonnaise
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon celery seed
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
The Basque culture is rich as is their food heritage. Chimichurri is one of those iconic dishes. A fresh, raw sauce that is draped over grilled meats such as steak, chicken, pork or fish. In restaurants you may see this sauce served with skirt steak. The sauce can be used as a marinade, or a way to season roasted potatoes or other vegetables as well as a lovely way to dress greens for a salad.
I have used approximates for my sauce. The beauty here is that the measurements can be adjusted to fit your need. In total, what I prepared equaled about one cup but you can make more if you like. I started out by tearing off approximately 1/2 cup of loosely packed flat leaf parsley, cilantro, basil, dill, and oregano. I added three or four cloves of minced garlic as well as a couple tablespoons of minced shallot. The juice and zest of one lemon along with about 1/4 cup of white wine vinegar and 1/2 a cup of extra virgin olive oil Salt and pepper to taste and everything gets blended in the food processor. You can also do this old style, in a pestle and mortar.
This sauce is very green tasting. It has a delicious tang from both the citrus juice and zest as well as the sharpness of the vinegar. The oil brings everything together and binds the whole thing into a rich and lovely sauce. It really cannot be compared to anything and it really does stand on it's own as a unique and delicious condiment like no other.