Thursday, September 1, 2011

Skirt Steak with Chimichurri

    Alex and I are still on our mission to clean out the freezer.  Little by little we are getting there.  I picked up this skirt steak sometime early this year or late last year from Dickson's Farmstand Meats and it has been hanging out in the freezer ever since.  But we finally liberated it for dinner tonight and served it with a nice quick chimichurri we whipped up in the mini food-prep.  Skirt steak and chimichurri make for a wonderful pairing.  Alex described this dish as full of "herby, spicy, saucy goodness."  If I were to translate that into a more sophisticated description, I would say that the chimichurri is a really bright, fresh and delicious sauce, with a nice kick to it from the vinegar and red chili flakes, that compliments the rich, meaty flavors of the skirt steak.  The chimichurri is a little too intense to work well with fish or even chicken breasts.  I think it would pair best with steak (like we did tonight) or lamb.  It also might work just fine with some nice chicken thighs.  I know there is some debate about whether you should salt your steak a little (or a lot) in advance of cooking it and let it sit there, or if you should season your steak just before throwing it on the grill.  The debate is actually divisive enough that there is actually an article from Food & Wine about the proper time to season a variety of different meats.  Jaden Hair of Steamy Kitchen is a fan of "massively salting" her steaks an hour before cooking them.  I'm being completely honest when I say that I am not entirely certain that I can tell the difference.  The steak was juicy, but I don't know that it was any more juicy than it would have otherwise been.  And unlike the writer from Food & Wine, I am not motivated enough to do a side-by-side comparison.  All I know is that the steak was good and the chimichurri was really good.  It was a simple and flavorful meal that I can see myself making in the future.  The end.  If you want to experiment with salting your steak, well then that is your business. 

    Recipe after the jump!

    Skirt Steak with Chimichurri

    3 tbsp red-wine vinegar
    2 tbsp water
    3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
    1 tbsp shallot, chopped
    3/4 tsp salt, plus additional for steak
    1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
    1/2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper, plus additional for steak
    1/4 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
    1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
    1 tbsp fresh oregano, roughly chopped
    1/4 cup evoo
    1 skirt steak
      In a food processor, combine the vinegar, water, garlic, shallot, s&p, crushed red pepper flakes, cilantro, parsley and oregano. Process in brief bursts. Slowly stream in oil while processing. The sauce should still have some texture to it - don't over process.  Set aside.

      Remove skirt steak from fridge and sprinkle with kosher salt.  Set aside to allow steak to come to room temperature, about 20 minutes.  Pat dry with paper towels.  Season with s&p.  Heat a grill pan (or a grill if you're lucky enough to have one) over medium-high heat.  Cook steak about 3 minutes per side (depending on the thickness of the steak - ours was pretty thick) for medium-rare.

      Remove steak from grill and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes.  Thinly slice against the grain.  Serve steak drizzled with chimichurri.

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