Chimichurri Dominicano, the popular Dominican chimi burger is a sauce-dripping sandwich made throughout the Dominican Rep. in street stands, each with its own recipe and flavor. Learn how to make this hamburger at home with the Internet's most popular chimi recipe.
Why we ❤️ it
Visit the Dominican Republic, and you find them everywhere. These popular "carritos" dotting cities and towns are crowded by young night revelers coming from or going to the party. Everyone stops there to recharge with a fría and one of the quintessential Dominican street foods: El Chimi.
It may appear difficult to make, but as the comment attests, there's a reason this is the oldest and most popular chimi recipe on the internet.
What is a Dominican chimi?
Chimi (short for chimichurri) is a Dominican hamburger, a traditional Dominican street food that shares a name with the famous Argentinian chimichurri sauce. Chimi consists of a handmade ground beef patty, grilled alongside onion, cabbage, and tomato. It is served inside a pan de agua bread and drizzled with its signature pink sauce.
Two main characteristics separate the Chimichurri burger from other burgers. One is the bread (generally Pan de Agua, an inexpensive bun similar in texture to French baguettes). The other is using shredded cabbage instead of lettuce. And it never includes cheese.
Dominican chimichurri hamburger.
Unlike the typical American burger, chimi isn't served with anything else except "una fría", and ice-cold Dominican beer.
- This sandwich/burger is traditionally made with pan de agua (a Dominican bread similar to mini-baguettes).
- If you can't buy or make pan de agua, use burger buns, because what else can you do if you really want some chimis?
About our recipe
Chimi burgers are not usually prepared at home but are bought from street food stands. Each stand has its own recipe, seasoning, secrets, and fans.
It's impossible to find a standard recipe because there isn't one. Each vendor has a different way of making this, and a faithful clientele that prefers his/her chimichurri sandwich. This recipe will allow you to make chimi at home with successful results. No wonder it is one of our most popular recipes.
Do you have a secret to make your own chimi shine? Share it in the comments!
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Chimi [Recipe + Video] Dominican Chimichurri Burger
For the chimi sauce
- ½ cup ketchup
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ¼ cup orange juice
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Seasoning for the meat
- 1 large red onion
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 bell pepper
- 2 teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper , (freshly-cracked, or ground)
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 pound minced beef
For the chimi
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, (soy, peanut or corn)
- 1 red onion cut into rings
- 2 diced tomato
- 2 cups shredded cabbage
- 6 panes de agua, (or hamburgers buns)
Making chimi sauce
- In a small mixing bowl, mix the ketchup, mayonnaise, orange juice, and Worcestershire sauce. Set aside in the fridge.
Making the chimi patties
- Pulse onion, garlic, bell pepper, salt, pepper, and Worcestershire sauce in a food processor until you obtain a coarse paste.Mix the seasoning paste with the meat. Divide meat into 6 portions and form 6 patties (round for hamburger bread, oval-shaped for pan de agua).
Grilling the patties
- Brush a stove-top grill, heavy skillet, or large griddle with some of the oil and heat over high heat. Grill the patties, rotating until they are cooked through. Set the cooked burgers aside.
Toasting the bread
- Reapply some oil to the grill, lower the temperature to medium-high heat, and warm the bread.
Grilling the vegetables
- Reapply oil to the grill, and sear onion and tomato slices. Mix the cabbage with half the sauce made in step 1. Turn down the heat to medium and briefly cook the cabbage. Heating the cabbage is an optional step.
- Put meat, onions, tomatoes, and cabbage on the bottom half of the buns, and garnish with the remaining sauce. Top burgers with the other halves of the bread.You can briefly put them back on the grill and press lightly if you want.
- Serve right away. Goes great with an ice-cold beer.
Tips and Notes
What bread to use for chimis?This sandwich/burger is traditionally made with pan de agua (a Dominican bread similar to mini-baguettes. If you can't buy or make pan de agua, use burger buns, because what else can you do if you really want some chimis?
Nutritional information is calculated automatically based on ingredients listed. Please consult your doctor if you need precise nutrition information.
Why is it called "chimichurri"?
The best-known food bearing the name chimichurri is the green South American sauce. This namesake of the popular Dominican sandwich is based on parsley, garlic, onion, and other ingredients. It is most commonly served over grilled meat.
Chimis are a relatively new addition to the Dominican culinary repertoire. Chimichurri (neither sauce nor burger) are mentioned in any of the old Dominican cookbooks I own. Perhaps digging into the history of this dish will yield some clues...
There is a widely-spread --and perhaps apocryphal-- story (1)(2) that credits the Argentinian cook Juan Abrales with the creation of the "proto-chimi".
Abrales, having moved to the Dominican Republic from Argentina, opened in the 70s a food cart selling Argentinian "choripanes" with chimichurri sauce. As time passed the name for the sandwich was shortened down to just chimichurri.
When more people started selling the popular street food, the ingredients and preparation became more aplatanados. Eventually, the original hot dog-like dish became the chimi we now know.
Hamburgers are called hamburguesas in Spanish, but the most popular traditional Dominican burger is chimichurri (chimi for short), a popular street food in the entire country.
Dominican chimi is made of beef. The traditional beef party is seasoned and given a distinct red color with spices, grilled alongside tomato, onions and cabbage and served with a pink mayo-ketchup sauce inside a pan de agua (traditional Dominican bread roll).
- Historia del Chimi
- Chimi: El sándwich Dominicano