Recipe of the Week: Argentine Chimichurri
From classic comfort foods to regional standouts and desserts, we'll be sharing a new recipe with you each week.
Photo by jules This herb-packed condiment is popular in Argentinian cuisine.
This week, we're mastering a traditional chimichurri.
Widely known as the "ketchup of Argentina", the origin of the condiment's name is unclear. Some say it's the bastardization of the name of the man who introduced the sauce to Argentina, Jimmy McCurry -- an Irishman who fought alongside native troops in the independence movement of the early 1800s. Other stories feature Jimmy Curry, an English importer of beef, or James C. Hurray, a traveling Scotsman.
Regardless of the Jimmy, the story goes that the local tongue, unable to correctly pronounce the foreign name, turned the j's to ch's and the name chimichurri was born.
The pesto-like condiment, made with parsley, oregano, garlic, onion, and seasonings, gets a punch from a heavy dose of red-wine vinegar and a subtle earthiness from extra-virgin olive oil. It's commonly used to accompany grilled steak, but it also makes an incredible marinade or topping for fish, poultry, pork and more.
This recipe for classic chimichurri comes from James Beard Award-winning chef Michelle Bernstein, who, when she was 5, learned the recipe from her Argentine-Jewish mother.
Here's how to make it:
See also: Recipe of the Week: Coq Au Vin
In a food processor, combine the parsley, red-wine vinegar, garlic, oregano and crushed red pepper. Pulse until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
Transfer the sauce to a bowl and pour extra-virgin olive oil over the mixture. Mix and let stand for at least 20 minutes. Taste and re-season as needed. This can be refrigerated overnight and brought to room temperature before serving.
The herby, vinegar-packed sauce is impeccable as is, but perhaps the best part of making it is that you can use the leftovers to make chimichurri butter. Y