There are few things more precious to a cattle rancher than a perfectly-cooked steak dinner.
You’ll hear no disagreements from this farm wife on the matter. Give me a medium-rare filet and a glass of cabernet and I’m in heaven. But as Farmer Dan likes to remind me, there are other, more economical options besides filet mignon and rib-eye when it comes to delicious cuts of beef. (To which I say: Perfect. That just means we can afford better wine!)
As the man who helms the grill in the Cwach kitchen, Dan appreciates the challenge of grilling a lesser cut of meat. One of our favorite ways to dress up a leaner piece of beef is to create a Chimichurri sauce, a traditional Argentinian condiment that can be used on all types of grilled meats, but is especially delicious on beef. We like our chimichurri sauce with lots of herbs (parsley, cilantro and oregano), extra garlic, oil and vinegar and plenty of lime juice for bright, fresh, citrusy flavors. If you have an overflowing herb garden this summer, this is a perfect way to use up your herbs and add a little color to your plate.
To start, select any economical cut of meat (try flank, skirt, hanger or top round- there’s no need to dress up a prime cut like filet!), let it sit at room temperature for 30-45 minutes, rub with olive oil and season liberally with coarse sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper. Sear at a high temperature (over 500 degrees Fahrenheit) just until medium rare. Be sure to avoid over-cooking, which is easy to do when there is less fat in the meat. For those gorgeous crosshatch grill marks, cook for one minute, then rotate the steak 90 degrees. Let cook for another 90 seconds (depending on the thickness of the steak), then flip and repeat. Remove from the grill, let it rest for 10-15 minutes, and slice against the grain to avoid chewiness.
For the chimichurri sauce, I recommend using a small food processor (we use a Cuisinart Mini-Prep processor) to chop and mix the ingredients, but a regular kitchen knife and spatula work just as well. If using any kind of processing equipment, make sure to pulse rather than puree, or you’ll end up with a soupy, pale green sauce that is less than appetizing. You should be able to see bits of the herbs and garlic and onion in your sauce.
For an easy side, try roasted baby potatoes. To make, drizzle olive oil generously over halved baby potatoes. Season liberally with your favorite seasoning (we like the Spuds Seasoning from Lunds & Byerlys). Bake at 400 for 20-25 minutes or until tender.
1 cup fresh parsley
1 cup cilantro
¼ cup fresh oregano
6 cloves garlic
2 Tablespoons white or yellow onion
½ cup olive oil
2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
Juice and zest from half a lime
Kosher sea salt and red pepper flakes, to taste
Using a knife or food processor, finely chop parsley, cilantro, oregano, garlic and onion. Add in olive oil, lime juice and zest, vinegar and salt and red pepper flakes until you have a loose consistency. You may need to stop and scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Avoid over-blending or pureeing. Let sit in the fridge at least 30 minutes or overnight to allow flavors to blend. Before using, stir, taste, and season as needed. Store in an air-tight container for up to a week.
Modified slightly from https://curedbybacon.wordpress.com/2013/03/03/argentinian-steaks-with-chimichurri-sauce/.