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July 3, 2019

The King of Sauces: Traditional Chimichurri

by Julieta Lucca

Much like the ingredients and traditional recipes of South-America, Chimichurri is one of those sauces that stick with you from the moment you try it.

Original from Argentine and Uruguayan cuisines, Chimichurri is generally used on grilled meats and sausages (“chorizos” — not the Spanish kind) straight out of the grill (“parrilla”) but that doesn’t stop people from smothering it on everything, from salads and potatoes to bread and everything else you can think of.

Side note, if you ever find yourself in Argentina, you have to eat “un choripan con chimichurri”, that’s a grilled sausage placed in between the softest bread buns and doused in Chimichurri.

The reason why I love this sauce so much is because of how versatile it is. It’s extremely easy to make and you can adjust the level of spiciness to your liking, by adding less “Aji Molido”. Over the years, variations of the sauce have been created, and so you can pretty much concoct your own version by adding ingredients into the base recipe. Note, if you can, it’s advisable that the Chimichurri is left to rest for 24 hours prior to using it so that the flavours can mingle and develop, however, I do like the tanginess and punch of a non-matured sauce. This recipe is my mom’s, who probably learned it from her mom. You will find many different recipes out there calling for onion and other ingredients, but THIS is the original and traditional chimichurri.

INGREDIENTS

🕑 10 minutes

  • makes 1 cup
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley (finely chopped)
  • 5 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
  • 2 tbsp Aji Molido
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp salt
  • a pinch of black pepper
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water

METHOD

– Making Chimichurri it’s as easy as combining everything in a jar and shaking it. Take a clean jar and fill it with the finely chopped parsley, followed by the garlic, onion, oregano, salt and pepper.

– Add the Aji, which is essentially a type of red pepper that’s been dried and ground. Note it’s slightly spicy, so if you are not a fan of sauces with a kick, add less.

– Follow up with the oil, the vinegar and 1/4 cup of water. Once you’ve added them to the jar, you can close it with the lid and start shaking.

– Open the jar and have a quick taste. Does it have a good balance? Chimichurri has a very strong flavour. The garlic and the vinegar should be the first thing you taste, followed by a touch of the Aji and the fresh and grassy flavour of the parsley.

– Once you are happy with the taste, put the lid back on and close it. Place in the fridge until needed.

– Traditionally, Chimichurri is brushed on meats that have been just taken out of the grill. The sauce is then placed on the table so everyone can take some more if they want to. For those of you who are vegetarian or vegan, don’t let that put you off. Chimichurri goes well with literally everything, including vegetarian sausages.

Learn it, Say it!

“un choripan con chimichurri” a sausage sandwich with chimichurri

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