A Simple Cuban Barbecue from Marta’s Cuban American Kitchen

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My husband, Eric, invited one of his clients over for dinner the other night, and he asked me not to make a fuss.
“Let’s just barbecue,” he said.
“Fine,” I said, “I’ll just do a simple Cuban-style barbecue.”

So, I didn’t make a fuss . . .
I made a mouth-watering Churrasco con Chimichurri. 😉

For the uninitiated, Churrasco is a garlicky, marinated flap or skirt steak that is barbecued and served with a flavorful sauce called Chimichurri.

“Umm… Honey? If this is simple, what’s an elaborate Cuban barbecue?” =D


Churrasco Estilo Cubano

3- 4 lbs. Skirt or Flap steak (NOT Flank)

Ingredients for Marinade:
20 – 30 cloves garlic
1 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
1 ½ cup bitter orange juice
½ cup white onion, minced
2 tsp. oregano
½ cup olive oil

For Steak Marinade:
1) In a food processor or blender, process garlic and pepper to form a paste.


2) Remove from processor and stir in bitter orange juice and oregano.
3) Let sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
4) Whisk in the olive oil until it’s well blended.

Preparing steak:
1) Remove steak from package and pat dry.
2) Place in a large bowl or flat Pyrex dish and cover with marinade.


3) Cover and refrigerate for approximately two hours.

Chimichurri Sauce

1 bunch of cilantro leaves (or fresh parsley leaves)
8 cloves garlic
¼ cup vinegar
Juice of one lime
½ cup white onion
¼ cup sweet sweet roasted pepper strips (Vlasic)
3 Tbsp. oregano
2/3 cup olive oil
Salt & Pepper to taste


1) Put all ingredients EXCEPT olive oil in blender or processor and pulse to a thick mixture.
2) Do not over-process!
3) Remove from processor and whisk in olive oil – very important! .
4) Add salt and pepper liberally.

To cook:
1) Remove meat from marinade and grill on a pre-heated grill over medium high heat. Cook to desired doneness, but the more rare, the more flavorful.


2) Serve hot, topped with Chimichurri Sauce.


WARNING! Chimichurri is highly addictive! Have lots of Cuban bread available for extra dipping! =D

Buen Provecho!

8 thoughts on “A Simple Cuban Barbecue from Marta’s Cuban American Kitchen”

  1. Nothing better than a “Cuban” BBQ sauce, refreshingly different and much more flavorful than the typical American sweet sauce spread over an unmarinated, unspiced slab of meat.

  2. I was eating a salad when I read your recipe and I could not stop salivating. Definately “the” meal for Saturday night at my house! And I’m making some Dulce de Leche ice cream to go with it. It was a success with my familia!

  3. Jesus woman, how can you do this to me? Specially when I’m on a *F* vegetarian all natural diet to shed the weight I put on the last year….grrrrrr.

  4. Ventanita,

    You can pretend to have this delicious meal by substituting roasted/baked slices of eggplant for the meat (churrasco)… and then add the chimichurri sauce (I would use parsley over cilantro) to the cooked eggplant … it’s not the same, but it’s a good vegetarian alternative for now … 🙂

    I wish you well 🙂 Melek

    “Food is our common ground, a universal experience.” ~ James Beard

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