These are super flavorful meat sandwiches, with marinated sirloin steak and that wonderful parsley sauce from Argentina known as chimichurri. You'll find the authentic recipe below.
Imagine you have a plate with a juicy sirloin steak and a tomato salad. You reach for a warm, crusty french bread, and sop up the most incredible pool of salty beef juice, vinegar, and oil, and eat it of course.
Add some garlic and parsley to that and you have an idea of what these steak and chimichurri sandwiches or sliders (they are small) are all about. It doesn't get much better than this, does it?
I don't know if my small sandwiches fall into the category of sliders but let's wing it, they are, after all, the best and most flavorful sirloin steak bites you'll ever have, with slices of juicy meat and Argentina's pretty well known garlicky condiment, chimichurri.
Marinating the meat
I found through the years that marinating meat is one of the best ways to add flavor. Though I'm all in favor of making a super-fast garlic butter steak, this simple marinade will add a lot to the final meat sliders.
What is a marinade?
It's a mixture of ingredients where meats (beef, chicken, fish, etc.) are soaked for a period of time in order to add flavor to them and make them more tender as well.
Today we're using very simple and everyday ingredients (garlic, oil, balsamic vinegar, pepper) because they do the job but don't imply a lot of work. This is an extra step that is worth it (image below).
The chimichurri sauce is a very traditional food here in Argentina.
Now, I know I'm writing this from the land of 'chimi' (as we call it) and here there are as many authentic versions as there are persons, but let me tell you none of them has cilantro, unless you want to add cilantro and call it cilantro chimichurri, but that's another story.
- The ingredients that make a traditional chimichurri are parsley, garlic, oregano, vinegar andají molido (red pepper flakes), and sometimes a bay leaf. A couple of days marinating in the fridge makes the flavors meld together.
Facts about chimichurri
The sauce is not oily or modern, it's pungent with garlic and vinegar flavors and even a bit coarse on the mouth.
It's literally watered down, otherwise, it would be just vinegar.
Regular cooking oil is added together with red pepper flakes (ají molido).
I may, at some point, have used olive oil and smoked paprika with a pinch of ground cayenne because I didn't have any ají molido. And man, I can be banned from this country for posting such a chimichurri.
So the recipe today is 10000% authentic, the one a true native (which I am) would post.
Seriously, I think it's an acquired taste, and one of the most popular uses for it is in chorizo sandwiches, which is nothing more than a french bread roll, barbecued pork/beef chorizo, and chimichurri. One of the best appetizers in the world.
These sliders are full of flavor, very simple and, in my opinion, depend on two things: crusty french bread rolls (preferably warm) and juicy meat so that the crumb is moistened by it. If you like meat, sopping the juices with a good bread is the best part, don't you think so?
Tips and tricks
- Chimichurri: though you technically can make it at the last moment, it's best if you make it in advance. Leave it marinating for a few days to allow the flavors to meld and become one amazingly flavorful powerhouse.
- Bread: use simple crusty bread rolls and warm them before you make the sandwiches. Soft rolls don't have the same effect as they become soggy. We don't want that.
- Meat: I use sirloin steak but any meat you like in a sandwich works. Especially cold barbecued meat leftovers.
- Marinade: If you can, leave it marinating all day, or at least 3 to 4 hours.
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A wonderful sirloin sandwich with authentic chimichurri from Argentina.
- 12 oz. (350g) sirloin steak
- 1 fat garlic clove (peeled and crushed)
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 Tbs olive oil
- 2 Tbs balsamic vinegar
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 10 small crusty rolls
- 2 tomatoes
- Chimichurri sauce
- In a rather shallow bowl, mix garlic, bay leaf, olive oil, balsamic and pepper to taste. Add steak, turning to coat and cover it with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until ready to use, at least 4 hours, turning it occasionally.
- When ready to assemble the sliders, heat 1 Tbs olive oil in a large skillet.
- Add meat and cook over medium heat for 2 to 4 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness of the meat. Transfer to a plate and let rest for 5 minutes so juices re-distribute.
- Cut the rolls in half and the tomatoes in slices.
- Cut the steak across the grain and, dividing evenly, put a few slices over half of the bread, making sure no juices are left behind. It's important for the bread to be embedded in meat juice.
- Top each bread with a tablespoon of chimichurri, add a little olive oil and top with tomato slices. Salt the tomatoes and close the sliders with the remaining bread.
Chimichurri: though you technically can make it at the last moment, it's best if you make it in advance. Leave it marinating for a few days to allow the flavors to meld and become one amazingly flavorful powerhouse.
Bread: use simple crusty bread rolls and warm them before you make the sandwiches. Soft rolls don't have the same effect as they become soggy. We don't want that.
Meat: I use sirloin steak but any meat you like in a sandwich works. Especially cold barbecued meat leftovers. If making the sandwiches right when you cook the steak, don't leave the juices from the meat behind, use them to moisten the bread.
Marinade: If you can, leave it marinating all day, or at least 3 to 4 hours.
Keywords: steak sandwich