Here is a recipe for the traditional Argentinian chimichurri served with empanadas. This tangy combination of fresh herbs, garlic, onion, capsicum, spices, vinegar and oil is perfect to lift the meaty flavour of the empanadas.
- 2 white onions
- 2 red capsicums (peppers)
- 1 fresh small red chilli
- 150 g (5½ oz/1 bunch) flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
- 90 g (3¼ oz/1 bunch) coriander (cilantro)
- 250 ml (9 fl oz/1 cup) red wine vinegar or sherry vinegar
- 300 ml (10½ fl oz) sunflower oil
- 1 fresh bay leaf
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 garlic cloves, unpeeled
- salt, black pepper
- 2 tbsp dried oregano
- 2 tbsp aji molido (see Note) or 1 tbsp chilli flakes
- 3 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tbsp paprika
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Combine the dry spices in a large bowl and pour over 100 ml (3½ fl oz) of boiling water to bring out their flavours. Allow to cool.
Finely dice the onion, capsicum and chilli. Chop the parsley and coriander leaves. Mix the vegetables and herbs into the spice mixture. (Alternatively chop all the vegetables and herbs in a food processor, then add the spice mixture.)
Add the vinegar, oil, bay leaf, cinnamon stick and the bruised garlic cloves, stirring to combine. Season with salt and pepper and spoon into an airtight jar.
The sauce will keep in the refrigerator for about 10 days. Remove the garlic before serving.
• Aji molido is a very common condiment in Argentinian cuisine, made from dried capsicum flakes. It can be found in Argentinian grocery stores.
Recipe and image from Argentinian Street Food, Enrique Zanoni & Gaston Stivelmaher (Murdoch Books, $29.99, hbk)