Churrasco is the Argentinian word for grilled beef. But it was Nicaraguan immigrants of the Sandinista era who popularized the dish in Miami. Today, we have dozens of Nicaraguan steak houses, ranging from ranch house-style restaurants decorated with wrought iron and cowhide to bucolic haciendas.
Nicaraguan churrasco is always served with a trio of sauces: Chimichurri Spicy Tomato Sauce and a spicy pickled onion relish called Cebollita. Other classic accompaniments include Gallo Pinto (red beans and rice) and Maduros (fried sweet plantains).
Read Related: Churrasco with Aji Sauce: Grilled Steak
CHURRASCO NICARAGUAN STYLE
Serves: 4 to 6
1 piece beef tenderloin (2½ lbs), fat and silverskin trimmed off
½ cup chopped Italian (flat-leaf) parsley leaves
3 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup Spanish olive oil
¼ cup dry sherry
3 TBSP sherry vinegar or wine vinegar
1 TSP freshly ground white pepper
1 TSP salt
Nicaraguan table sauces, for serving (see above)
- Cut the tenderloin lengthwise, with the grain, into 4 flat, even strips. Place the strips between sheets of plastic wrap and gently pound with the side of a cleaver to form steaks 10 inches long and ½ inch thick.
- Combine all of the marinade ingredients in a nonreactive dish or bowl. Add the beef and marinate, covered, in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 hours, turning occasionally during that time.
- Preheat a barbecue grill to very hot or preheat the broiler with the tray 3 inches from the heat.
- Drain the beef and blot dry with paper towels. Grill or broil the beef for 1 minute per side for rare; 1 to 1½ minutes per side for medium; and 2 minutes per side for well done. Serve the beef with the trio of Nicaraguan table sauces on the side.