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Argentinian Steak House at Home

Chimichurri dresses up any cut of meat, but is especially good on a tri-tip roast. The ingredients are simple and can be found locally. Add some crusty, sliced bread for the perfect feast.

One of my favorite cuts of beef is the tri-tip roast. It is as tasty as a good steak when marinated and grilled. It is a serious cut of beef and can be adapted to fit into many types of cuisines.

The tri-tip comes from the bottom sirloin of the cow. Originally, United States beef producers primarily used the tri-tip for ground beef or sliced it into thin steaks. On the West coast, the tri-tip began making its appearance as a roast in the late 1950s.

Tri-tip roast can be found in a number of places in the area. Occasionally,in St. Peters has tri-tip roasts, but they can always be found at  or , both in O’Fallon.

To dress up the tri-tip, a simple chimichurri sauce makes you feel like you are in an Argentinian steak house. Chimichurri is a simple South American condiment made with parsley, garlic and olive oil.

in St. Charles is a great resource for olive oil needs. They carry only the freshest oil and you can taste before you buy. For my chimichurri sauce I used Italian oil, although they do sell South American oils too, depending on the season.

Over the years, I have tried many different marinades on tri-tip roasts, but my favorite is adapted from a recipe I found on the Food Network’s website, called Six Hour Tri-Tip Marinade. The marinade recipe makes enough to cover two- two pound tri-tip roasts. Marinate the roasts for at least six hours, and up to 12 hours.

When you are ready to grill the tri-tip, pre-heat your grill to medium and drain the marinade. Two-two pound tri-tip roasts take about 25 minutes to cook to medium-rare. A meat thermometer is your best defense against overcooking the roast. Some tri-tip roasts are cut thinner than others, so it is best not to leave the grill unattended.

 in St. Charles has everything you need to stock your pantry for the tri-tip marinade.

Tri-Tip Marinade                      

Makes enough to cover two-two pound roasts

½ cup fresh lemon juice

½ cup olive oil

¼ cup sugar                                                                               

1/3 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce

¼ cup ground black pepper

1/3 cup garlic powder

¼ cup kosher salt

½ cup dehydrated sliced onions (found at Old Town Spice Shoppe)

2 - two pound tri-tip roasts

Mix all ingredients in a large zip style kitchen bag. Place your roasts into the bag and marinate for at least 6 hours.

Preheat grill to medium, drain marinade and grill meat to your desired doneness.

Chimichurri Sauce

Makes about 1 ½ cups

1 bunch parsley

6 cloves garlic, peeled

1 tablespoon chopped onion

¾ cup olive oil

1/3 cup red wine vinegar

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt and pepper to taste

In a food processor, combine all ingredients and process until smooth. Serve at room temperature.

Chimichurri is best eaten fresh, but can be kept refrigerated for up to one day.

About this column: Great Eats With Patti is a weekly column by Patti Baratta. A self-taught cook with a passion for food, Patti will provide a few easy-to-make meals from her personal recipe collection. All meals, unless noted otherwise, are original creations.

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