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Grilled steak chimichurri + charred corn

This steak chimichurri is the perfect meal for summer. Flavorful marinated skirt steak with charred corn and a bright chimichurri sauce made from fresh herbs, garlic, and red chili peppers. The best part? You don’t even need a grill.

Sliced skirt steak with chimichurri served with charred corn on the cob.

I freaking love eating charred food during the summer. It takes me back to every backyard barbecue, campfire, and hour spent with family or friends around a grill. There’s just something special about that crackle as the flames hits your food. I know not everyone has access to a grill, but the good news is you can still make this grilled steak chimichurri right inside your kitchen. You may just need to open a window. Or two.

Just to be safe.

Not having access to a grill for most of my five years in LA has sort of been a buzzkill, especially since geographically, I could grill all year round. However, it has forced to get more creative. I’ve gotten pretty good at mimicking those same smoky, summer flavors inside my kitchen. A large cast iron skillet (one with ridges if you fancy) and a gas stovetop burner will be your two best friends in accomplishing this.

Juicy, medium-rare skirt steak cut into slices on a rustic pan.

You can use extremely high heat when cooking with cast iron. It emits nearly ten times as much heat as stainless steel, which is why you can’t hold your hand as close to a heated cast iron pan as you can a stainless steel one. Because of this, food tends to cook more evenly in cast iron as it’s able to cook several inches of food above the surface, as well. High heat and even cooking are necessary for both grilling meat and recreating those smoky, charred flavors of summer.

Skirt steak is a pretty thin cut of meat, so it’s best seared hot and quick. You want a nice medium-rare cook to avoid it from getting dried out and tough. You could also use flank steak if you can’t find skirt steak. To keep it juicy and tender, you should rest the meat for 5-10 minutes before slicing into it and cut against the grain—or nonparallel to the way the muscle fibers are aligned.  You can see what I mean by this in the third strip of steak in the photo above.

If you have a gas burner you are blessed, my friend. Gas burners are the shizzzz when it comes to faux grilling. I’ll char anything from jalapeños, to corn, to marshmallows on my stovetop. It’s literally a mini, controllable fire inside your kitchen—utilize it. I roasted the corn in the oven at 450 degrees F until it was tender and then charred it over the flame on the stove, rotating with tongs until evenly cooked. The kernels even crackle and pop the same way they do on the grill! Yay.

Fresh green chimichurri sauce in a bowl next to red chili peppers and garlic.

Ok, so now on to this delicious chimichurri that I cannot stop eating! Chimichurri is an herbaceous, oil-based condiment from Argentina and Uruguay that is served with grilled meats. I’ve actually been putting it on everything from meat, to sautéed veggies, to eggs, and beyond. It’s super bright and fresh from the parsley and tangy red wine vinegar, and the garlic and chilis give it a delicious savory touch.

Contrary to most recipes you will find around the internet, I do not use a food processor for my chimichurri. I chop it all by hand, baby. I learned from Cafe Delites that processing it will result in more of a puree than an oil-based condiment, which can take away that authentic touch. But if chopping is not in your cards today, process is up, my friend. I am not the authenticity police.

Enjoy.

Grilled steak chimichurri + charred corn

Serves 4

INGREDIENTSSteak chimichurri with grilled corn next to fresh ingredients.

For the chimichurri 

  • 1/2 cup parsley, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 fresno chili peppers (or a couple tsp crushed red pepper flakes)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • salt and pepper

For the steak 

  • 1.5 lb skirt steak
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh-squeezed lime juice
  • 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup tamari (or soy sauce)
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
  • coconut oil, melted
  • 2-4 ears of corn, husked

INSTRUCTIONS

Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees F and roast corn directly on the rack for 20-25 mins or until corn is tender. Transfer corn to your stove top directly over the flame, rotating with metal tongs to get char marks on all sides. Set aside to cool.

For the chimichurri

Finely chop parsley and mince garlic as fine as you can. Remove the stem and seeds from chili peppers—or leave the seeds for more heat—and finely chop. Add everything to a bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Let sit for at least 30 minutes for flavors to meld. I like to make it the night before and keep it in the fridge.

For the steak

Add all ingredients except coconut oil and corn to a large plastic ziplock bag or airtight container and mix well. Let marinate for 3-8 hours max, do not marinate overnight. Since skirt steak is pretty thin it takes on flavor quickly, so marinating too long may result in a funky flavor.

When ready to use, take steak out of fridge and let come to room temp for at least 30 mins. This will ensure even cooking. Remove steaks from marinade and pat completely dry. Rub with melted coconut oil and season with salt and pepper.

Heat a large ridged (or not) cast iron skillet over high heat until it’s smoking hot. Literally smoking—I recommend opening some windows and also blowing a fan towards them. When it becomes too hot to hold your hand above the pan’s surface, your pan is ready.

Place the steak in the hot skillet and sear for 2-3 minutes on each side (for med-rare) depending on the thickness of your cut, until a nice charred crust forms on both sides. Transfer to cutting board and let rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing to keep juices in tact.

To get the most tender cut, slice it against the grain into thin strips. Serve with chimichurri and grilled corn. I like to cut the kernels off the cob and add it right on top of the steak along with the chimichurri.

Sliced skirt steak on a cutting board next to chimichurri sauce and fresh ingredients.

For more indoor grilling ideas check out my Teriyaki chicken salad with grilled pineapple or Chili lime shrimp and veggie kebabs!

 

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