May 20, 2009

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Serves 8

Similar to a vinaigrette, but more highly seasoned, chimichurri is traditional to Buenos Aires, but popular throughout Argentina. Make the sauce ahead of time because the longer it steeps, the deeper the flavors. Never brush uncooked meat with chimichurri before grilling. The sauce goes onto the table with other condiments, including lemon juice and mayonnaise. "Asi Cocinan los Argentinos/How Argentineans Cook," by Alberto Vazquez Prego, and written in both English and Spanish, is a lengthy guide to food techniques and ingredients. He dedicates more than 20 pages to asado.

1/2 cup oil
1 cup warm water
1 cup vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 scallion, finely chopped
1 small bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 bay leaves

1. In a large bowl, combine the oil, water, vinegar, salt, garlic, parsley, scallion, bell pepper, paprika, cumin, red pepper, oregano, and bay leaves. Stir well.

2. Transfer the mixture to a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Refrigerate for 1 to 2 days. Adapted from "Asi Cocinan los Argentinos"