25 August 2015

Ways with Chimichurri Sauce, or how to use all that parsley your neighbor gave you

Chimichurri sauce is delicious!  When you get sick of pesto (really, at some point you will), try this Argentian cousin, which is not only herby and garlicky, but pleasingly citric and spicy, as well. My favorite recipe is below, but I encourage you to experiment with different herb combinations and sour components (swapping the vinegar for lime juice, for instance, is also really nice).

This sauce is traditionally applied to steak in Argentina, but it's so good, you'll want to put it on and in everything.  Some of my favorite uses are below.

Basic Chimichurri Sauce

1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups fresh Italian parsley leaves
3 garlic cloves
1/4 cup oregano leaves
1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper

Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Refrigerate for up to three weeks in an airtight container, or pour into an ice cube tray and freeze individual portions as flavor bombs for soups and pasta.  

Uses for Chimichurri Sauce

  • Spread over grilled steak, chicken, or white fish
  • Mix with mayo (or not) as a sandwich spread
  • Toss with pasta and fresh steamed vegetables
  • Mix generously into hamburger or salmon patties
  • Saute with vegetables and beans and serve over rice
  • Add a bit to scrambled eggs
  • Stir into red sauce for pasta
  • Spread on a bagel with cream cheese and top with thinly sliced onion and tomato
  • Add to soups
  • Stir into mashed potatoes
  • Use as a taco sauce
  • Toss with black beans for a side dish
  • Stir into plain Greek style yogurt as a dip for crackers
  • Use as a pizza sauce and top with tomatoes and cheese