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Pan-fried Chimichurri Steak

A tangy South American sauce for steak, this makes a delicious Saturday night treat, especially served with chips. A 2cm/3⁄4in thick steak takes about 5 minutes for medium-rare if it was at room temperature before cooking and the pan is really hot. Leftover sauce will keep for a few days in the fridge to serve with grilled, roast or fried chicken or fish. You can also use it as a marinade or toss it into cooked vegetables.

MAKES 2 adult portions PREPARATION TIME 10 minutes COOKING TIME 5 minutes

FOR THE STEAKS
A drizzle of oil
2 good-quality steaks, whichever cut you prefer, such as rib-eye, rump, sirloin or fillet, left at room temperature for about 30 minutes before cooking
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

FOR THE CHIMICHURRI SAUCE
1 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves 1 tsp fresh oregano leaves
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
A pinch of dried chilli flakes

TO SERVE
1⁄2 recipe quantity Oven-baked Chips (see below)
Roasted vine tomatoes (optional)

1 To make the chimichurri sauce, put the parsley, oregano and garlic in a small food processor or blender and whizz until finely chopped, then stir in the extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar and chilli flakes. Season with salt and pepper and leave to one side until ready to serve.

2 To cook the steaks, put a griddle or large frying pan over a high heat and leave to become super-hot, then add a trickle of oil. If the steaks are at all wet, pat them dry with kitchen paper, then season generously with salt and pepper. As soon as the oil is smoking hot, put the steaks into
the pan. Cook for about 11⁄2 minutes, then flip over, cooking for a further minute or so, then flip over every minute until the steaks are cooked to your liking. If there is a thick piece of fat around the edge of the steak, use a pair of tongs to hold the steak vertically in the pan to brown the fat.

3 Remove the steaks from the pan and leave in a warm place to rest for at least 5 minutes. Serve the steaks with any resting juices poured over, and spoon some chimichurri sauce on top. Serve with oven-baked chips and roasted vine tomatoes, if you like.

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