Have you tried chimichurri before? If not, you are seriously missing out. It’s commonly served with steak or other grilled meats, originating in South America, including deep roots in Argentina in particular. Variations on the basics of the sauce abound, but a few near-constants are parsley, cilantro, olive oil and garlic, garlic, garlic – so although its original intent was as a carnivorous condiment, it’s also perfectly suited to vegetarian and even vegan contexts. The more I thought about it, the more I wanted to try it on pretty much everything short of ice cream.
So, as it happens, I was contemplating making a chimichurri steak salad to bring to a birthday potluck this weekend, but knew there would likely be plenty of vegetarians in attendance. What better blank slate to showcase the flavor-fest that is chimichurri than potatoes? I decided to try making it into a potato salad.
Results: INSTANT PICNIC PERENNIAL. I will be looking for excuses to make this all summer long. See if you don’t feel the same way!
CHIMICHURRI POTATO SALAD
3 to 4 pounds Yukon Gold or Red Bliss potatoes, cubed (or quartered if small)
3 teaspoons sea salt, divided, plus more to taste
1 cup packed fresh Italian parsley (packed)
1/3 cup fresh cilantro (packed)
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
5 to 6 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
fresh black pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 425. Fill large stockpot with water and add 2 teaspoons of the sea salt. Bring to a boil and add potatoes, cooking for approximately 20 minutes. This is a good time to prep all the chimichurri ingredients . . . Then, when potatoes are done boiling (just on the edge of fork-tender), drain thoroughly, then transfer to an oiled baking sheet and roast for about 10 minutes, until golden brown. The first time I made this, I cranked it up to broil for an additional 3-4 minutes, and thought this was extra-nice, but it’s optional.
As potatoes are roasting, pulse remaining ingredients together in a food processor. Five or six assertive pulses ought to do it – you don’t want it pureed into a paste; it should have some texture. When roasting is complete, refrigerate the potatoes separately for an hour (or more) and toss together just before serving.
Altoids on the side might be a good idea.
Other adventures in chim-chimini chim-chimini chimi-chimichurri:
— posted by Anne