Chimichurri reflects the mix of Spanish and Italian influences in Argentina, and the overall taste and preparation seem inspired by Genovese pesto.
Legend has it that the name comes from an Irishman named Jimmy McCurry, who is credited with creating it while marching with the troops of General Belgrano in the cause of Argentine independence. However “Jimmy McCurry” was difficult for the native people to say, so the sauce became known as “chimichurri”... an apocraphyl tale, perhaps, but plausible. We'll buy it.
Pan-Roasted Alaska Halibut or Sablefish (Black Cod) with Chimichurri on “Green” Rice
Suggested wine: Sauvignon Blanc
Prep time 45 minutes
3/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided
3/4 cup chopped Italian parsley, divided
1 tablespoon organic dried oregano
1‒1/2 fresh jalapeño chilies (about 1-3/4 oz. total), rinsed, stemmed, and seeded
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1/2 yellow onion, diced
6 tablespoons plus 1 tablespoon organic extra virgin olive oil
5 tablespoons lime juice
About 1/2 teaspoon plus 1 teaspoon kosher sea salt
2 cups long-grain white rice
1‒1/2 pounds Alaska Halibut or Sablefish (Black Cod), cut into 4 equal portions
Organic black pepper
1 tablespoon butter (or Olio)
- In a blender or food processor, whirl 1/2 cup cilantro, 1/2 cup parsley, oregano, jalapeños, garlic, onion, 6 tablespoons olive oil, lime juice, and 1/2 teaspoon salt until smooth. Taste, and add more salt if desired. Scrape chimichurri into a small bowl.
- Combine rice, 3-3/4 cups water, and 1 teaspoon salt in a 4‒5 quart pan. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer until rice is tender to bite, 15‒18 minutes. Remove from heat, sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup cilantro and 1/4 cup parsley over the top and fluff rice with a fork, mixing in herbs.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 F. Rinse halibut and pat dry. Sprinkle all over with salt and black pepper. In a 10‒12 inch ovenproof frying pan over medium-high heat, melt butter with remaining tablespoon olive oil. Add halibut and cook until browned on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Turn portions over and transfer pan to the oven. Bake just until fish is opaque throughout, about 10 minutes.
- Spoon "green" rice onto dinner plates and top each mound with a halibut portion. Drizzle a little chimichurri over each piece of halibut; serve remaining sauce at the table to add to taste.
Nutrients per serving: 786 calories, 32 g total fat, 6 g saturated fat, 37% calories from fat, 62 mg cholesterol, 43 g protein, 78 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 1,007 mg sodium, 138 mg calcium, and 1 g omega-3 fatty acids.