Find more recipes below!

September 17, 2018
This is about...
chimichurri my way 7625.png
        HOMEMADE CHIMICHURRI IS A DELICIOUS WAY TO USE UP ANY OF THE FRESH HERBS IN YOUR FRIDGE OR GARDEN, even if they are starting to fade a bit. It’s a tasty, herby, green, spicy, tangy sauce traditionally served over grilled steak, BUT DON’T STOP THERE---USE IT EVERYWHERE--- over veggies, fish, chicken and grains.
       Typically, this Argentinian sauce includes fresh parsley and oregano, chili peppers--fresh, dried or both-- some fresh garlic, cumin, a fruity oil, and the zing from some red or white wine vinegar. But, I like to switch it up from the original, by usually adding some mint, cilantro, and lime juice—even a few drops of honey sometimes. My way is not a true chimichurri, but it’s still a delicious green sauce. AND, IT DOESN’T HURT THAT IT COMES TOGETHER IN A FLASH --- simply a whizz away in your blender or food processor.
       Like I said this sauce is considered an Argentinian creation. BUT GUESS WHAT? THIS IRISH GUY, BY THE NAME OF JIMMY McCURRY, IS ACTUALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR COMING UP WITH THE RECIPE. As legend has it, in the early 1800’s, he was in Argentina fighting with the rebels for their independence from Spain, when a general, sick of their Uruguayan “slop,” asked if he could whip anything up. Minutes later he emerged with grilled steaks covered in this sauce. It was an immediate hit with the rebels and locals. But, Jimmy McCurry was too hard for any of the Argentinians to pronounce, so they called it Chimi-Churri’s sauce. EVEN THOUGH ARGENTINA TAKES THE CREDIT, THERE ARE SOME VERY ADAMANT IRISH FOLK THAT CLAIM IT AS THEIR OWN. (And now you know the rest of the story.)
       Here, I’ve tossed some chickpeas with the sauce and let them marinate for a few minutes first. Then, I tumbled them over slices of fresh beefsteak tomatoes (New Jersey grown, of course,) added some crumbled feta, more chimichurri drizzled on top, and finally a sprinkle of freshly cracked black pepper and flaky sea salt--- YUM!

LESSONS Learned:
1. Want to be traditional? Just leave out the cilantro, mint, and lime juice.
2. Want to be experimental? Use it as a blank canvas, or as a way to use up whatever you have on hand at the moment. Just keep the proportions in mind. Different herbs, oils or vinegars will all work.
3. Fresh oregano can be hard to find. You can use dried instead, about ½ to 1 teaspoon in this recipe.
4. Being the fresh garlic wimp that I am though, I always opt for a lesser amount. But, you can certainly up the ante here and throw in a lot more. As a precaution though, I would still add one clove at a time, taste, and then add more to your liking.
5. Smooth or chunky? Using a food processor, you’ll get a more rustic sauce. Throw everything into a blender, especially high speed, and you’ll end up with a creamier one. If you don’t want to use a food processor or blender, you can chop everything up very finely and then simply stir together, or use a mortar and pestle to do the work.
6. More ways to use it: toss with roasted veggies, stir into yogurt or mayo for a dip or dressing, marinate meat or cheese in it, use as a sandwich spread or add to your meatball mix before cooking them......

(with chickpeas, tomatoes and feta)

For the chimichurri:
1 cup packed flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup packed mint
1/2 cup packed cilantro
2 Tablespoons fresh oregano, leaves only
½ -2 teaspoons red pepper flakes, depending on heat tolerance
½ -1 small serrano or other hot red or green chile, optional
1-4 garlic cloves, peeled
¼ teaspoon cumin
2 Tablespoons lime (or lemon) juice, extra to taste
1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon mild honey, optional
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt, plus more to taste
a few grinds of freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
For the salad:
1 15 oz. can chickpeas, low sodium
4-5 medium tomatoes, ½ inch slices
4 -6 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
flakey sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Make the chimichurri:
       If using a food processor, combine all the ingredients except the olive oil in a food processor. Process everything until it is roughly chopped. Through the feed tube with the processor running, slowly stream in the olive oil, mixing until well-blended. Scrape down the bowl as needed. Taste and adjust salt and lime juice levels, if desired.
       If using a blender, add all of the ingredients and blend until combined. Blend less for a chunkier version, more for a creamier one. scraping down the jar as needed.
       Let sit for at least 30 minutes at room temperature to allow the flavors combine. It may lose some of its verdant green color, but it will keep in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. Just let it come to room temperature before using.
Makes about 1 1/2 cups.      YUM!

Make the chickpea salad:
       Drain and rinse the can of chickpeas. In a small bowl, toss the chickpeas with about ¼ cup of more of the chimichurri. Let sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes to marinate.
       Slice the tomatoes about ½ inch thick, and spread out onto a serving platter. Spoon the chickpeas evenly over the tomatoes, crumble the feta over all and drizzle with the sauce. Sprinkle with the salt and the pepper.
Make 4-6 servings.      YUM!
Would LOVE to hear from YOU! Leave your COMMENT below.