March 21, 2012

When You Have Herbs Growing Out Your Ears

Rosemary.  Cilantro.  Italian oregano.  Mexican oregano.  Parsley.  Dill.  Pineapple sage.  Mint.  Spearmint.  Herbs are in crazy abundance in my spring garden.  The winter rains have made for some happy plants and I've been saving some serious coin by growing my own.

This week the parsley and Italian oregano were the key ingredients in basic chimichurri, a family favorite.

Steven Raichlen writes in The Barbecue Bible, "Chimichurri is the traditional accompaniment to South American grilled meats...No two chimichurri recipes are exactly alike, although the basic recipe contains just four ingredients:  parsley, garlic, olive oil, and salt."

I made a few changes to Raichlen's recipe...added sherry instead of vinegar, omitted the carrot and used fresh oregano in lieu of the dried.

Just grab a bunch of parsley and process with some garlic and salt until smooth. 

Then add some fresh oregano, red pepper flakes, sherry and olive oil, again processing until smooth.  That's it.  Easy peasy. 

Basic Chimichurri
The Barbecue Bible

1 bunch fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley, stemmed
1 small head garlic, broken and peeled
1 medium carrot, peeled and grated
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 cup white wine vinegar (I used sherry)
1/4 cup water
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1.  Combine the parsley and garlic in a food processor and pulse to chop as fine as possible.

2.  Add the carrot, oil, 1/2 cup vinegar, the water, 1 tsp salt, oregano, 1/2 tsp hot pepper flakes, and the black pepper.  Process to mix.  Taste for seasoning, adding vinegar, salt, or pepper flakes as necessary; the sauce should be highly seasoned.  The chimichurri will keep for several days in the refrigerator, but it tastes best served within a few hours of making.  

*I used half as a marinade for skirt steak and reserved the rest for serving along side the grilled meat.   

Yum.  Enjoy!


  1. I have dill, thyme and rosemary growing. That's it! I just planted a tiny sprig of mint. It all smells so good.

  2. Sounds like a winner. I have the ingredients so will give it a try. Thanks

  3. Looks fabulous. Looking forward to making this. Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  4. Cat I cannot wait for my herbs to grow to try this...looks incredible.

  5. Sounds delicious! Will have to try. I just planted some oregano, dill and cilantro seeds and they are beginning to come up. Parsley is spreading rapidly and waiting on the swallowtails to lay their eggs.

  6. Looks sooooooo good. I had to buy a basil plant the other day and I have to pray that it lasts for longer than a week. Hope you were ok with the email I sent you. xxo, Sandra

  7. Chimichurri... learned a new word today... my 'herbs' are still sleeping in the cold winter...

  8. I've had parsley growing all winter - oregano, thyme, and rosemary, too. The mint will soon be trying to take over everything. I'll be planting basil and dill in a week or so.
    The recipe sounds great - something new to try!

  9. Excellent! I love having fresh herbs to cook with. I only have rosemary and sage now, but during our mild winter a volunteer parsley plant sprouted near my onion bed. This recipe looks delicious, and I bet it would taste great with skirt steak. thanks for sharing!

  10. Mexican oregano -- you just reminded me I need to find some (or some seeds) this year. It's on my list of new plants to try.

  11. This sounds great. I'm going to try this. My parsley 'shrubs' could use a pruning. Thanks for the recipe.

  12. That does sound yummy. I like the changes that you made, too. You're making me hungry!

  13. I enjoy growing and cooking with fresh herbs, too. Cilantro plants itself in my garden, as does borage. I never know what to do with borage, though. I have garlic in the basement from last year's crop. I used some today, and it was still good. I'm thinking it will keep until the next crop is ready.

  14. If you have excess herbs, you should try mint or cilantro chutney - you will die! I slather it on just about everything.

    Also, since you're in Austin too, I buy coriander by the pound at an Indian grocery store, and while it's tasty, it does actually germinate at a fraction of the cost for "proper" cilantro seed. Go figure!

  15. Wow, this looks absolutely gorgeous, so fresh and tasty. I adore your photgraphy.



Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind.
"Pooh!" he whispered.
"Yes, Piglet?"
"Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's paw. "I just wanted to be sure of you."
~A.A. Milne

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