Argentina (Part 2)

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Carne y Chimichurri

Argentinean flank steak with parsley sauce. Pictured above (top right) with bunuelos de espinaca (top left) and tzatziki sauce (bottom).

Total time: 40 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 2 medium-size jalapenos, finely chopped
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 bay leaves
  • 1 cup fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1 cup fresh oregano, finely chopped
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1.5kg flank steak (can substitute tenderloin if flank steak not available)

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Directions

  1. Preheat a grill or broiler to high.
  2. In a food processor, combine vinegar, jalapenos, garlic, and bay leaves. Puree until smooth. Add the herbs, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Puree briefly until well-blended. Set aside.
  3. Season the flank steak with olive oil, salt, and pepper and grill/broil the steak medium rare. Slice the steak thinly. Serve with chimichurri sauce.

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Family Ratings

  • Mama: 5/5 for chimichurri sauce, fantastic!
  • Papa: 4.7/5, great steak and great sauce!
  • Girlie: 3/5, I don’t really like steak
  • TW: 5/5, the steak and sauce combination is perfect
  • McM: 4/5, I don’t generally like steak but the chimichurri sauce is very flavorful and I think it would go well with many other dishes

Original recipe: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/argentinean-steak-with-parsley-sauce-carne-y-chimichurri-recipe.html

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Iran (Part 2)

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Uyghur Polo

Beef and rice pilaf, a staple dish among Central Asian countries including Iran. Pictured above (on left) with yogurt spinach dip (on right).

Total time: 1 hour
Servings: 4-6

Ingredients

  • 2 cups rice
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 500g beef (we used tenderloin)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 500g carrots, julienned
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 bulb garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • salt to taste

Directions

  1. Cook rice according to package instructions (we used a rice cooker).
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Cook the beef in the oil until evenly browned, stirring occasionally (about 10 min).
  3. Add chopped onion to the pot and cook until translucent (about 10 min).
  4. Add carrots to the pot. (Initially it may look like there are too many carrots in the pot, however they will shrink with cooking and mix well into the recipe).
  5. Pour water into the pot. When the water boils, add the garlic bulb. Let the mixture simmer (5 min).
  6. Remove the garlic bulb and reserve. Add cumin. Allow mixture to simmer on medium-low heat (15-20 min).
  7. Add cooked rice to the mixture and stir.
  8. Replace the garlic bulb and pour raisins on top of the rice. Cover pot and cook on medium low heat (10-15 min).
  9. Remove the garlic bulb.
  10. Serve with naan and yogurt spinach dip as garnish (see recipe on this blog).

Family Ratings

  • McM: 4.5/5, very flavorful!

Original recipe: http://www.food.com/recipe/uyghur-polo-pilaf-411849

Afghanistan

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Qorma-E-Samaruq

Traditional Afghan mushroom stew with lamb.

Total time: 60 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients

  • 3 cups chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2kg lamb chops, diced and bones removed* (see note below)
  • 2 800ml cans chopped tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • salt to taste
  • 900g mushrooms, rinsed, stems trimmed, thinly sliced

Directions

  1. Heat the oil in a large deep skillet over medium heat. Saute the onions until lightly browned (about 3-5 min).
  2. Add chunks of lamb and continue to saute, turning frequently, until lamb turns light brown (about 10-15 min).
  3. Add tomatoes, spices, and salt to taste. Stir and continue cooking until lamb is almost fully cooked (about 15 min).
  4. Add mushrooms, cover, and cook until mushrooms are tender and lamb is done (about 15-20min).
  5. Serve with rice or naan.

Notes

  • Some family members do not like lamb so we prepared this recipe using 1kg diced lamb chops and 1kg diced tenderloin (other cuts of beef could be substituted). We used separate skillets for lamb and beef and divided the above ingredients in half for each skillet.

Family Ratings

  • McM: 3/5, very flavorful with tender juicy lamb but very spicy overall and would recommend using half the spices next time.

Original recipe: http://www.afghankitchenrecipes.com/recipe/qorma-e-samaruq-chicken-and-mushroom-stew/