A tender, perfectly-seasoned piece of steak will take your breath away. The problem is that sometimes you want to give your beef a little pizzazz or kick it up notch, if you will. Variety is the spice of life, right? We know you die-hard salt and seasonings fans may disagree, but allow us to introduce you to our three little friends: Pistou, Pesto and Chimichurri. They are similar and simple ways to dress up that same ole steak with a delicious tux.
A pistou is a French sauce, from quaint Provence in the southeastern region of France. The basic sauce has basil, garlic, olive oil and often parmesan cheese. If you want to put your guns to work, you can crush it up by hand using tools like a mortar and pestle. (pictured above) OR just take the easy way out, like me, and throw a bunch of basil, a couple cloves of garlic and a chunk or parmesan cheese into a blender. While it's blending, drizzle in enough olive oil to give the sauce the consistency you like. Season with salt and pepper and you are done. This sauce would also be ribbon-worthy on Cornish Game Hens.
If Pistou had an Italian twin brother, it would be Pesto. A pesto has primarily the same ingredients as a pistou but with the addition of nuts, traditionally pine nuts. The pine nuts give it some texture and a hint of a woodsy taste. For an easy change of flavors, try substituting in hazelnuts, pistachios or another favorite nut for the pine nuts. Small tweaks like that help make it more compatible with whatever meat you're Traegering. Imagine how incredible this would taste on Traeger's Wood-Fired Pizza with some grilled chicken, mozzarella, a few fresh basil leaves and a drizzle of olive oil to finish. I need a napkin just thinking about.
A chimichurri is the brother from another mother. An Argentine mother. Instead of basil, it typically has parsley and some vinegar in addition to the garlic and olive oil. Odds are that you have had this slathered onto a chunk of meat, perhaps even on Traeger's Smoked Peppered Beef Tenderloin, because it is tasty and a restaurant staple.
These three sauce brothers are herbaceous and not only revolutionary for your steak, but on all sorts of Traeger creations. The freshness of the herbs makes a perfect partner for that rustic, smoky flavor. The potential for pizzazz is endless. Perhaps they could even revive and breathe some life into those cold leftovers...if you still have any.