Green, vibrant, bright Chimichurri Sauce is a great Argentinian sauce made of parsley, garlic, oregano, olive oil, spices and vinegar. Easy to make!
For those who are not yet familiar with Chimichurri, it is a flavourful, herb based sauce often used to complement red meat or chicken. However, you’re not limited to a carnivorous main. Chimichurri is great with grilled vegetables, spread on sandwiches and wraps, used as a salad dressing or even added to soup. This is a sauce that’s so full of flavour that you don’t have to add much to taste its effect. It is heavy on garlic, parsley and olive oil, and it is extremely easy to prepare. Impress your guests by adding a flavour kick to otherwise ordinary recipes.
It’s worth spending some time on the many uses for Chimichurri. Because it is so similar to pesto, but it has the consistency of a sauce, there are a huge variety of meals that it can enhance. It is great drizzled over a fried or poached egg. It makes a delicious topping for bruschetta, along with a mild cheese and burst rosa tomatoes. You can mix it with cream cheese to make an infused spread for sandwiches or drizzle it over a taco topping to add interest to the mixture. Add it to salsa for a fresh flavour infusion or dip chicken in Chimichurri before you dip it in a crumb coating for a fresh take on crispy basted chicken. Pour it liberally into pasta salad. Add it to chickpeas, or serve it as a condiment for fish such as seared tuna or baked salmon.
Bear in mind that the sauce is not cooked, so it’s important to select ingredients that you would like to taste in the sauce. We prefer extra virgin olive oil and fresh herbs. While parsley is the traditional choice you can exchange it for coriander for a sharper tasting Chimichurri. Depending on your preference, you can exchange red pepper flakes for chilli flakes, crushed red pepper or even very finely chopped fresh chilli. This is a recipe where fresh garlic blends nicely with the rest of the ingredients. Some recipes call for a shallot or onion to add body to the mixture. Fresh oregano is in keeping with the garden fresh taste of the sauce, but you may use dried oregano if it is more easily available. Farmer’s markets are a great place to buy fresh herbs. If you don’t have the time to visit one, the fresh produce aisle at your local supermarket will do just fine.
The sauce should be stored in the fridge, but served at room temperature. It is recommended that you make the Chimichurri well in advance and refrigerate it for up to a day to allow the flavours to really sink in. Some people prefer to add the sauce to the meat before it is grilled, but it is traditionally served in a bowl along with other condiments on the table so that guests can add it in according to their personal tastes. It is rarely missing from an Argentinean family meal, and once you’ve tasted it, you may adopt the tradition yourself.
Argentinian Chimichurri Sauce Recipe
- Fresh parsley- 2 cups ( finely chopped)
- Garlic cloves( finely chopped)-4-5 medium
- Vinegar ( 3 %) -1/4 cup
- Virgin Olive oil- 1 cup
- Dry Oregano herbs- 2½ tbsp
- Dry Red Chili Flakes- 1 tsp
- Ground Black Pepper- ½ tsp
- Salt- approx. ½ tsp or To Taste
- In a food processor with a blade attachment place chopped parsley,garlic cloves, vinegar, dry oregano,red chili flakes,black pepper and salt( to taste). Process 20-40 seconds total. Don't over-process.
- Gradually add virgin olive oil and process for another 10-20 seconds.
- Transfer the sauce in the airtight container and refrigerate at least 4 hours . You can store it up to 1 week.