Thursday, October 04, 2007

Chimichurri and Skirt Steak

I've been meaning to post about chimichurri (an Argentine salsa), so I dug through my photos, and here it is.

A recipe for chimichurri is going to vary from family to family, and everyone believes that the variation that they grew up with is the best one out there. I'm no different - I used to sneak in the kitchen and eat this stuff with a spoon while my mom was out back, grilling the steak. There are three "secrets" to good chimichurri, in my opinion: (1) use fresh ingredients, (2) don't use a food processor, as it makes the whole mixture rather bitter, and (3) loosen up and adjust the ingredients to suit your tastes! So, I present you with my family's chimichurri recipe, but keep in mind that it is only a guideline, and even I adjust quantities every time I make this.

1 cup loosely packed fresh flat leaf parsley
1/4 cup fresh oregano
4-6 plump garlic cloves
a pinch of dried red hot peppers (unlike Mexican food, Argentine food generally is not "hot")
kosher salt to taste
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2-3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar

Finely chop the parsley, oregano, and garlic. Combine with all the other ingredients and adjust the amounts until you like how it tastes. You can add more vinegar and olive oil until you get the consistency of a thick soup. This will make enough to marinate the meat, but you won't have any extra to serve with the meat on the side, so if you want more chimichurri, at least double the recipe.

Rub over the skirt steaks (about 2 pounds) and marinate for a few hours. When ready to grill the meat, clean off the marinade (you don't want the garlic to burn), and grill quickly, usually only a couple minutes on each side. Serve with more chimichurri.


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