A choripán is what I like to think of as a Spanish or Mexican hot dog. It’s extremely simple to make and is a great option if you’re looking to add a little heat to your next cookout.
A choripán is a type of sandwich that is popular throughout South America and gets its name from the the combination of ingredients used: chorizo and pan (which means bread). Although I haven’t been there…yet, my understanding is that choripánes are a popular street-food that are grilled on food carts throughout South America, but can vary slightly from region to region. Choripán is typically made from grilled Mexican chorizo, but several varieties of Mexican or Spanish sausages can be used; I stumbled upon this recipe when i was looking for ways to eat my Longaniza de Chiles. The three things you’ll need for these sandwiches are: Mexican or Spanish sausages, crusty rolls or french bread, and chimichurri.
First things first: Chimichurri. It’s like pesto, but with parsley.
Chimichurri is originally form Argentina, and is to their culture what ketchup is to ours; it goes on everything. I looked up close to twenty recipes for chimichurri, and every single one was slightly different than the last. One of the theories for how chimichurri got it’s name is that it originated when the Basque settlers arrived in Argentina in the 19th century; According to this theory, the name chimichurri comes from the basque term tximitxurri, which means, “a mixture of several things in no particular order.”
The several things you’ll need for sure are: parsley, garlic, vinegar, and oil. Olive oil is a popular choice, but you can use canola oil if that’s what you have on hand. I loosely based my recipe around the one I found here, but added some lemon instead of balsamic vinegar. There are probably a million-and-one ways to make chimichurri; I’m about to make it a million-and-two.
- a head of parsley chopped up, stems removed
- 5 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
- juice of a lemon
- about 1/2 cup of olive oil
- about 1/4 cup of white distilled vinegar
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- couple dashes of red pepper flakes
- couple dashes dried oregano
- 1 crumbled bay leaf
Mix these things up, or other similar things that you like better, in no particular order. I gave everything a good whirl in the food processor until it was the consistency I liked… it’s not rocket science. Try and make this at least several hours before you’re going to serve it so the flavors get a chance to know each other.
- Mexican or Spanish sausages, such as Chorizo or Longaniza de Chile
- Crusty rolls or french bread
- Grill or pan fry the sausages for about 8-10 minutes. Remove the sausages from the grill and slice in half lengthwise, called a mariposa (which means to ‘butterfly’). Return the split sausage to the heat for about a minute or two, inside part facing down.
- Get you bread nice and toasty, either on the grill or in the oven.
- Slather bread with chimichurri.
- Put sausages on the bread.
- Do we really need a step five? I think four steps is already about two steps too many. I mean, it’s pretty much like assembling a hot dog; written instructions shouldn’t be necessary if you’re past the age of 7.
Alright, step six: eat and enjoy with your friends. Drink cervezas and margaritas.