I originally came across chimichurri in Argentina, where they use this condiment (best descriptor I can think of) on pretty much everything. Mainly meats. And let me tell you, it is phenomenal. I've used it so far on steak, fish and pork, and there's nothing I don't want to douse it in. Think garlicy, herbaceous, lemony, with just a kick from some red chili flakes. All tossed into one phenomenal jar.
I'll tell you right now, by the way, that my chimichurri is by no means traditional. Most recipes simply call for olive oil, garlic, fresh oregano, cilantro, chili pepper, and salt. Mine has about five or six more ingredients. Why? Because that's who I am. Nor is it scientific. Honestly, the first time I just started adding things, and kept making adjustments along the way. I'd recommend doing the same, and using the recipe below as a guideline. But seriously, try making this and not using it on every protein you consume. I dare you.
So, along with the chimichurri, about two days later (or it actually might have been the same night, not sure anymore) I made homemade jam out of the two berries I had sitting in my fridge. I think one of the main reasons I was so into making condiment-like foods was because I had just gone to The Broadway Panhandler (great kitchen store) and bought at least six different types of bell jars. And then felt compelled to fill them.
Actually, if I'm honest, I'll admit that I've wanted to make homemade jam for a lot longer than since buying the jars. I've made batches before, but they've always been more akin to curds or relishes. This is a proper, slather your morning toast, having between two slices of bread with peanut butter kind of jam. My inspiration came after buying a fabulous (and fabulously expensive) jar of Sarabeth's jam, turning it over and seeing "Ingredients: Cherries, sugar, plums". That was it. I just couldn't help myself. Surely if there's only three ingredients, I can't mess things up too much, can I?
And guess what? Apparently I can't! Hoorah! My on-the-fly jam came out lovely. A bit too much on the thick-ish side (next time I'll reduce the mixture a bit less), but it's jam, and it's delicious. And it definitely set me back WAY less than my fancy jam.
Probably cooked about seven or eight minutes too long. Try and stop your when you can coat the back of a spoon and run your finger clean across the surface.
However, I did add an ingredient or two. Or, really just one ingredient in two different forms. Lemon, in the form of skin and juice (and a pinch of salt, but that hardly counts) I felt the berries were great, but the sugar had muddled that brightness of flavors a bit. The lemon juice and zest really helped bring that freshness back to the foreground.
|The homemade goodies that made up a baby shower gift. The dark one is the jam. Also included: mom's garam masala, picked red onions, and lemon-lavender poppyseed/browned butter and walnut sables. (Recipe for those coming soon)|