Monday, November 3, 2008


A few weeks ago we went to a bring-your-own-meat barbecue at a very nice house with a spectacular outdoor kitchen and backyard.  I love bring-your-own-meat because everyone brings something different.  I always try to "crank it up a notch," thanks Emeril, at these things, so that everyone is jealous of my food.  For this Barbecue I made Chimichurri skirt steak.  Chimichurri is a latin meat sauce that I learned about in Steve Raichlen's book, How to Grill.  The following recipe is featured in the back yards of Argentina.  It came from Raichlen's book but I've modified it a bit.  Again, I can't recommend the book enough.  It's perfect for people like me, who are more interested in technique than recipes.

Chimichurri Sauce

1 bunch (the packet you get at the grocery store) Flat leaf parsley.
1 bunch cilantro
1 small plastic box mint leaves.
3 clove garlic or more depending on taste and how strong the garlic is.
Salt (to taste)
Pepper (to taste)
Red pepper flakes (the kind you put on Pizza)
A dash of Cayenne Pepper gives it a nice bite and I'd like to try putting a little fresh horse radish in but haven't yet.
1/2 Cup Olive Oil
1/3 (Or more) Cup White Whine Vinager
1/2 Cup water

Preparing the meat

Chop everything and process or use a blender (like me) to puree.  
Skirt steak works very well but you can use any thin, marbleized cut.  I'd also like to try the sauce with Chicken.
Butterfly the meat so that it is as thin as possible, then work it over with a meat tenderizer mallet.  (I don't have one so I use a cheese grader.)
Pour a thin layer of sauce in a glass pan, then put a layer of meat down.  
Cover the meat with sauce and put down the rest of your meat.  Cover this with more sauce.  Save 1/2 to 1/3 of your sauce to pour on the meat at serving.
Let the meat (refrigerated) sit in the sauce all day (the longer the better) until it's grilling time.
Grill the meat with the sauce on it to your liking.  (I recommend as rare as you can stand it.)
Serve the meat smothered in the reserved sauce (remember to get it out of the refrigerator when you start grilling.

Side dishes can be anything, try black beans and rice.  A hardy Wine, like Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon goes well with the dish.   There are some delicious wines from Argentina.  Impress your guests with a wine from the same region as your cuisine.  Which you can get in most any decent wine vendor including some grocery stores.   Of course good beer goes with anything. Enjoy, and let me know how your barbecue adventures go.