Reflecting on the Summer of Chimichurri

Tri-Tip Steaks with Chimichurri Sauce

I have tangible files of travel ideas. I have virtual files of travel ideas. Ideas for weekend excursions, best hikes, best camping, bike tours, Napa Valley wine tours, Yamhill County wine tours, Five Perfect Days in Paris, 72 Hours in Carmel, New York City with Kids, and on and on and on.

When summer hits, I panic as to how I’m going to fit in all of the travel. All of the “Must Do” and “Must See” items on the list. And yet, when summer actually kicks in and I’m faced with the time to do these things, I find that I mostly want to be at home.

I want to get up early knowing I’ve got at least another 5 hours before the teens are awake, and water the flowers on my deck in the warm air. I want to walk my puppy down the trail to the local coffee shop and chat with friends. I want white space on the calendar. I want to let the weather report determine whether we head to the coast, not the kids’ activity schedule.

Oregon Coast

This summer, I not only wanted to be at home, I wanted to be “disconnected.” While I am grateful for the World Wide Web and all of the ways it connects us, sometimes it’s just too much togetherness. I can’t hear myself think with all of the chatter. What about you? Do you feel that way sometimes?

So, I did just that. I disconnected. I took time to think and to just…be. Yes, we went on our traditional summer trips – the Oregon Coast, the California Redwoods – but nothing too long or too far from home.

And as the summer wound down, I found myself looking forward to reconnecting. To getting back into a routine. To chatting with all of you kind souls once again.

Now, school is in session once again. I’m tired of watering the flowers. The house is quiet and I’ve reconnected the virtual telephone lines. I’m taking comfort in being a part of the conversation again. Like I’ve been away on a trip but it’s nice to be back home.

Thought you might enjoy some snippets from our summer as well as the recipe for a chimichurri sauce I could not stop making and drizzling on everything in sight.

Hope this post finds you happy and healthy!


California Redwoods


Tri-Tip Steaks with Cilantro Chimichurri Sauce
Course: Dinner
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: Steaks for 6
I mostly disregard food trends. I let the seasons determine what I'm making; however, the recent chimichurri sauce craze would not let me be. Maybe it's the name. I mean, even if you don't have a clue what chimichurri sauce is, don't you want to make it, or at the very least say "chimichurri sauce" three times fast? While the Italians have pesto, and the French have pistou, Argentinians have chimichurri which they mainly love to drizzle over grilled steak. Traditionally made with parsely and oregano, I've found that the herb combinations are endless. Use whatever you have on hand. You can't go wrong. One of the beauties of this sauce is that it doesn't have cheese or nuts like pesto, so if you or someone you are cooking for has nut and dairy allergies, but all you can think about is basil pesto, voila, the chimichurri sauce is every bit as good. And I find myself drizzling it on just about everything I pull out to eat: proscuitto, goat cheese, and arugula sandwiches, tomato and mozzarella slices, hard boiled eggs, avocado, any and all grilled meat and fish, tacos, roasted potatoes, and stirred into quinoa, pasta, or rice salads. This meal brightener will last a few weeks in an air-tight container in your fridge.
For the steaks
  • 6 tri-tip steaks, 1-inch thick, approx. 2 lbs.
  • Coarse salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ c olive oil
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
For the chimichurri sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • ½ cup parsley and ½ cup cilantro, plus a bit of chives and mint
  • Or, ½ cup parsley and any combination of your favorite herbs: basil, oregano, rosemary, tarragon, chervil
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • ½ tsp coarse salt
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • ½ cup Arbequina olive oil or other high quality olive oil
  1. Generously salt and pepper both sides of your steaks. Whisk together olive oil, vinegar, and garlic powder. Combine olive oil mixture and steaks in an airtight bag, or other marinating container. Marinate for at least 1 hour, and up to 24 hours.
  2. In a food processor, mince garlic cloves. Add in parsley, cilantro, chives, and mint, (or any other combination of herbs,) red peppers flakes, salt, and vinegar. Process until herbs are finely chopped. With processor running, drizzle olive oil in through the feed tube. Allow sauce to sit for at least one hour before serving. Sauce can be stored in the fridge for up to a week.
  3. Take steaks out of fridge and stand at room temperature for at least 20 minutes before grilling.
  4. Preheat grill for medium heat. Grill steaks over direct medium heat for about 10-12 minutes for medium rare. Remove steaks from the grill and allow meat to rest at least 5 minutes before thinly slicing against the grain.
  5. Drizzle steaks with chimichurri sauce. Serve and enjoy.


A Live Version of the Making of Chimichurri Sauce


  1. I sure missed you, but it looks like you had a lovely summer! Looking forward to seeing your posts again.

  2. I missed your beautiful posts, but I am glad you had a wonderful ‘disconnected’ summer to spend with your family, and finding some space to really listen to yourself. Sometimes we need a hiatus from this online ‘life’ so that we can invigorate our creative side, and come back with even more to offer, and more experiences to share.
    Welcome back 🙂

  3. These pics of your family warm my heart! Glad you were able to unplug and enjoy time with people you love.

  4. So glad you enjoyed the summer. I absolutely understand the need to take a break. Can’t wait to hear about what you’ve been up to lately!

  5. Papa Bear says:

    We, the Cook family, were blessed with a wife and mother that was so fill with God’s grace and love for her family and friends that goes beyond description. You Courtney, Carrie, and Tim are and will continue to carry that wonderful gift your mother gave you forever. I am so blessed to have such wonderful children who are carrying Betty’s torch of love where ever they go. Love your family pictures as it reminds me of our many fun outings we had with mom.