Argentinian Parrilla with Chimichurri Sauce

Argentinian Parrilla with Chimichurri Sauce

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A parrilla is a simple grill in Argentina, but the wonders it can create! As barbecue expert Steven Raichlen noted, “Argentina can be a forbidding place for a vegetarian.” Chimichurri is the sauce most commonly served with beef straight from the parrilla, and there are dozens—if not hundreds—of variations of it, and a debate about whether it should contain chiles. You know which side we favor, and our version of chimichurri contains green ají chiles. Since cattle are so large in Argentina, why not use a huge steak? Serve with grilled sweet potato and poblano chile kabobs, and black beans and rice.

Ingredients

Steak Rub
2 tablespoons ground red ají chile or substitute ground New Mexican red chile
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon sugar
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon salt

The Steak
3-pound sirloin steak, 2 inches thick

Chimichurri Sauce
¼ cup red wine vinegar
4 cloves garlic, chopped
3 green ají amarillo chiles, seeds removed, chopped, or substitute jalapeños
1 bay leaf, center rib removed
1 small onion, finely chopped
3⁄4 cup chopped fresh parsley
¼ cup chopped fresh oregano or 2 tablespoons dried
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ to 1⁄3 cup olive oil

Instructions

Combine all the ingredients for the steak rub. Rub well into the steak, place in a large plastic zip bag and marinate in the refrigerator for a couple of hours or preferably overnight.

To make the sauce, combine the vinegar, garlic, jalapeños, and bay leaf in a food processor or blender and process until smooth. Add the onion, parsley, oregano, salt and pepper and pulse until blended but not pureed. Whisk in the oil and allow to sit for a couple hours to blend the flavors.

Before grilling, remove the meat from the refrigerator and bring to room temperature.

Grill the steak over a medium hot fire for about 20 minutes, turning often for medium-rare (150 degrees F. internal temperature). Remove the steak from the grill, allow to sit for 5 minutes, then slice the meat against the grain and arrange on a serving platter. Ladle some of the chimichurri sauce over the meat and serve the remainder on the side.

Heat Scale: Medium

Steak with Malagueta Basting Sauce

Steak with Malagueta Basting Sauce

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Restaurants in Brazil called churrascarias sell spit-roasted meats to order, and the skewers the meat is grilled on are actually swords. A churrasco is simply a Brazilian mixed barbecue, featuring beef and pork—but feel free to throw in a few sausages, as that’s the way it’s done in Brazil.

Note: this recipe requires advance preparation.

Ingredients

½ cup vinegar
½ cup lime juice
½ cup red wine
6 fresh malagueta chiles, chopped, or substitute tabascos
or serranos
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 Two-pound T-bone steak, 1 inch thick

Instructions

Place all the ingredients for the basting sauce in a blender or food processor and puree. Transfer to a nonreactive bowl and allow to sit for a couple hours to blend the flavors. Marinate the steak in the mixture for 1 to 2 hours.

To prepare the beef, drain the meat and reserve the marinade in a pan. Bring the marinade to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer 20 minutes.

Grill the beef over a medium-hot fire, basting frequently with the marinade, and turning often, for about 10 to 12 minutes for medium rare (150 degrees F. internal temperature).

Brazilian Habanero Basting Sauce for Pork Chops

Brazilian Habanero Basting Sauce for Pork Chops

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This is part of a traditional Brazilian Churrasco, or mixed meat barbecue. Many habanero relatives grow in the Amazon Basin, where the species was domesticated.

Ingredients

4 boneless loin pork chops
1 cup water
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons salt
6 juniper berries, bruised (lightly bashed all over with a spoon)
2 fresh habanero chiles, seeds and stems removed, chopped
1 teaspoon freshly ground white peppercorns
1 teaspoon freshly ground black peppercorns
1 teaspoon freshly ground coriander seeds
3 bay leaves, crushed
4 whole cloves
1 teaspoon dried thyme

Instructions

Place the pork into a non-reactive bowl. Combine the water, salt, and sugar in a bowl and stir until dissolved. Add the
remaining ingredients and mix well. Pour the marinade over the pork and add additional water to cover the pork, if necessary. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator overnight.

Remove from the marinade and place on a plate. Discard the marinade.

Grill the pork for about 10 to 12 minutes, turning occasionally, until done to 160 degrees F.

Heat Scale: Medium

Onion Sauce (225x225)

Onion Sauce

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Ingredients

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 bay leaves
4 cloves
1 one-inch piece of cinnamon stick
1 black cardamom pod
3 large Spanish or mild onions, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups water

Instructions

Heat the oil in a saucepan, add the bay leaves, cloves, cinnamon stick, and cardamom pod and cook for 1 minute over medium heat. Add the onion slices, lower the heat, and simmer until they are soft.

Add the water and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.

Remove from the heat and cool, then puree the sauce in a blender.

Mirichi ka Salan

Mirichi ka Salan (Mild Chiles in a Nutty Sauce)

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Chef Sundeep Bhagat from Lucknow, La Porte’s specialist in vegetarian cuisine, created this marvelous recipe for chile lovers that combines the fresh pods with coconuts and other nuts.

Ingredients


For the Nutty Sauce:
2 cups freshly grated coconut meat
1 ounce raw peanuts
1/2 ounce raw cashew nuts
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon tamarind sauce

For the Chiles:
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon turmeric
5 teaspoons Onion Sauce (see recipe above)
1 small fresh tomato, chopped
1/2 teaspoon New Mexico red chile powder
Salt to taste
1/2 cup yogurt
8 fresh New Mexican chiles, sliced on the side to remove the seeds, stems left on
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
2 sprigs fresh curry leaves, or 1/2 teaspoon dried curry leaves, rehydrated and patted dry
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

Instructions

To make the nutty sauce, dry-roast all the ingredients except the tamarind sauce in a frying pan, then add them to a blender with the tamarind sauce and a little water and process to a fine paste.  Set aside.

To make the chiles, heat 2 tablespoons of the vegetable oil in a large frying pan, add the turmeric and onion sauce, and heat gently. Add the tomatoes, chile powder, and salt.

Whisk in the yogurt and mix well. Continue to stir until the mixture thickens, about 5 minutes. Add the nutty sauce paste and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally.

In another frying pan, heat the remaining oil and lightly sauté the chiles for 2 to 3 minutes, turning several times. Transfer the chiles with tongs to the yogurt mixture and add the mustard seeds and curry leaves to the oil and heat until the mustard seeds pop.

Then transfer this oil to the yogurt mixture and stir everything together. Cook on low heat for an additional 2 to 3 minutes. Check for salt and add the lemon juice.

Heat Scale: Medium