Lately I’ve been plodding my way through a long list of garden chores. But since all-work-no-play makes Kevin a dull boy, I’ve also been making lots of fun things to eat! For instance, last night I whipped up some Chimichurri sauce, and spooned it over a pan-seared, oven-finished flank steak. Yum, yum, yum. Here’s the recipe:
There must be hundreds of recipes for Chimichurri. Unfortunately, they all involve cilantro — an herb I despise. But when used in association with parsley, bell pepper, onion, garlic, olive oil and lemon juice, cilantro loses its foul edge, and actually becomes quite pleasant on the palette. The result is a bright and sunny sauce that begs to be drizzled over tacos, grilled chicken, steamed fish, and yes — flank steak.
How I make this saucy main course:
No food processor for you?
Use a blender.
A question for you: Do you love cilantro — or loathe it? You can let me know by posting a comment below. On its own, I think the herb tastes like dirt. But as I mentioned earlier, it actually lends something wonderful to this Chimichurri sauce.
And 1/4 cup water…
If necessary, scrape down sides of the bowl (or jar) with a spatula.
Pour the contents into an attractive bowl, and chill until you are ready to use.
Shall we cook our flank steak? You could grill the meat if you like, or pan-sear it on the stove, and finish it off in the oven. For the sake of demonstration, I’ll use the stove-and-oven method.
Sear for 2 1/2 minutes, and then…
Transfer the skillet to a preheated 375°F for 4-5 minutes, or until it is medium rare. To be sure, just press the meat with your index finger. If the meat feels squishy, it is rare. If it feels mushy-springy, it’s medium rare. If it feels like shoe leather, it’s…overcooked.
Think you’ll give this recipe a whirl? Speak to me in the comments field below.
Meanwhile, here’s the copy-and-paste:
Flank Steak with Chimichurri Sauce
Kevin Lee Jacobs
Ingredients for at least 4 servings
For the Chimichurri Sauce:
1 bunch flat-leaved parsley
1 medium-size red bell pepper, roughly chopped
1/2 bunch cilantro (a handful)
1 small onion, roughly chopped
3 fat garlic cloves, peeled
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt and grinds of black pepper
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
For the steak:
1 flank steak (approximately 2 pounds)
Canola or some other vegetable oil for searing the meat
Kosher salt and grinds of black pepper for seasoning the meat
Special Equipment: A food processor or blender for the sauce; a well-seasoned, 12-inch diameter cast-iron skillet for cooking the steak; kitchen tongs for flipping the steak
Making the sauce — Put all of the sauce ingredients into a food processor or blender. Puree until smooth and thick — about 20 seconds. Pour the sauce into an attractive bowl. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Pan-searing the steak — Center the oven rack, and preheat the oven to 375°F. Meanwhile, heat the cast-iron skillet over high heat until smoking hot. Dry the steak with paper towels, and generously season one side with salt and pepper. Pour a glug of vegetable oil into the pan, and add the steak, seasoned-side down. Generously season the top of the steak. Sear for 2 1/2 minutes. Using tongs, flip the steak, and sear for just 2 minutes.
The oven finish — Immediately transfer the skillet to the preheated oven, and cook the meat for 4-5 minutes. To test the steak, simply press it with your index finger. If the meat feels mushy, it is rare. If the meat springs back after pressing, it is medium rare.
Transfer the steak to a wooden board, and let rest for 5 minutes, while the juices are re-absorbed. The slice thinly across the grain.
Serve with the Chimichurri sauce.
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