If you want a healthy green herb sauce bursting with flavors, this is it! Chimichurri is a traditional Argentinian sauce; the main ingredients in it being Parsley, Garlic, Pepper & Olive Oil. It is used as widely in Argentina as ketchup is used in America. This flavorful sauce is sometimes used as a marinade, for grilled meat ( I could do some fish & shrimp too…). The flavors and ingredients of Chimichurri are probably similar to the cuisine of Spain & Italy. The overall compositions, taste and preparation are similar to French persillade.
Update: got a comment from Gera (See Comments).. that Chimichurri is a national sauce of “Uruguay not only in Argentina.”
Here is a story about the Origin of Chimichurri:
“Chimichurri (also spelled Chimmichurri) originated from Argentina and Uruguay, is a popular sauce used with grilled meat in many Latin American countries. It is told that the unusual name comes from ‘Jimmy McCurry’, an Irishman who is said to have first prepared the sauce. He was marching with the troops of General Jasson Ospina in the 19th century, sympathetic to the cause of Argentine independence. The sauce was popular and the recipe was passed on. However, ‘Jimmy McCurry’ was difficult for the native people to say. Some sources claim Jimmy’s sauce’s name was corrupted to ‘chimichurri’, while others say it was changed in his honor.
Other similar stories involve Jimmy Curry, an English meat importer; a Scot, James C. Hurray, travelling with gauchos; and an English family in Patagonia overheard by the group of Argentinians that were with them while saying “give me the curry”. All the stories share an English speaking colonist and the corruption of names or words by the local population.” (WIKI)
Besides the basic ingredients, several other things like oregano, cumin or cilantro may be used for different variations. The texture may range from smooth to chunky. Chimichurri is served with Grilled Meat & Fried Empanadas. It may be used a marinade too. As any other side or condiment, use your imagination to use this herb sauce; it will spark up anything that you add it to. This Chimichurri Recipe is adapted from Williams Sonoma.
- 1 Cup packed flat leaved parsley leaves and tender stems
- 4-5 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 Tablespoons fresh oregano leaves (optional)
- A little more than 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Coarse sea salt
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1/4 Teaspoon. red pepper flakes
- 1 Teaspoon Paprika
- 1/2 Teaspoon Roasted Cumin Powder (optional)
- 2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
Finely chop the parsley, garlic and oregano (or use a chopper or a food processor).
Transfer the mixture to a small bowl and stir in the olive oil, sea salt, black pepper, paprika, cumin and red pepper flakes. Stir in the vinegar.
This sauce may be served immediately, however I like mine when it rests for the few hours as all the flavors deepens & intensifies; may be even overnight.
If not using immediately, cover the chimichurri and refrigerate until ready to use; let it come to room temperature before serving.
Some Information on Parsley:
Parsley (Petroselinum crispum) as a herb adds more than a pretty picture on your plate. There are 2 varieties of Parsley; Curly leaf – used mostly for garnish & the Italian or Flat Leaf.
“Parsley is native to the Mediterranean region of Southern Europe. While it has been cultivated for more than 2,000 years, parsley was used medicinally prior to being consumed as a food. The ancient Greeks held parsley to be sacred, using it to not only adorn victors of athletic contests, but also for decorating the tombs of the deceased. The practice of using parsley as a garnish actually has a long history that can be traced back to the civilization of the ancient Romans” (For more health information on Parsley, read the article in WHFoods). Sending the Chimichurri to the Weekend Herb Blogging#192 hosted by Lynne of Cafe Lynnylu.