BBQ Picanha with Lemon Verbena and Mint Chimmichurri

This recipe is the fourth in a series of four that I developed in partnership with the Big Green Egg who sponsored this post. (Read more about sponsored content on Eat Like a Girl). Previously in this series: BBQ Teriyaki Pig Cheeks, Miso Pork Aubergine and BBQ Clams with Gojuchang and Sake

One of my friends, a fellow food writer and blogger (Luiz of The London Foodie and author of the wonderful book Nikkei) presented me with a little cool bag for my birthday. I peeked in side and shrieked, thrilled to discover that he had gifted me Uruguyan picanha, a cut of beef which we would call rump cap, undervalued and misunderstood here but valued all over South America. With good cause. It is a perfect BBQ cut.


Chimmichurri is a perfect steak accompaniment. From Argentina, and fitting for this South American cut of beef, they usually serve it using dry herbs, I prefer the liveliness and texture of fresh. I also wanted this to be super summery, and looked at my new kitchen garden, particularly my gorgeous aromatic window sill, fragrant of bergamot, lemonbalm and lemon verbena. I chose lemon verbena and mint as the stars with some parsley to tone it down. I also add some Aleppo pepper, another gorgeous food gift from my friend Ailbhe. Adjust the quantities below to your taste, or if you prefer to go traditional, substitute oregano for the lemon verbena and mint. Really traditional means using dried herbs, but I much prefer the bright flavour and gentle texture of fresh. 


Picanha is a great value cut and goes far. It is tender and flavourful, it is quite lean too with the fat coating on top. The fat protects it as it cooks and gives it terrific flavour. Fat is flavour, let’s stop demonising it. 

If you are celebrating father’s day this weekend, this is perfect for your family lunch. Enjoy!

BBQ Picanha with Lemon Verbena and Mint Chimmichurri
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BBQ Picanha with Lemon Verbena and Mint Chimmichurri


  • 1 x picanha / rump cap (mine was about 2.5kg)
  • sea salt
  • a handful each of lemon verbena, mint and flat leaf parsley leaves
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 banana shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 heaped tsp of Aleppo pepper / pul biber (or a mild chilli of your choice)
  • 4 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil


  • Remove your picanha from the fridge an hour before you want to cook it.
  • Set up your BBQ / Big Green Egg for indirect heat at 150 deg C.
  • Salt your picanha 10 minutes before putting it on the grill.
  • Grill gently for 80 - 90 minutes until a thermometer placed in the center of the thickest part of the meat reads 52 deg C for rare, 63 deg C for medium rare and 71 deg C for medium. I like it rare.
  • Remove and rest for 5 minutes.
  • While your picanha is grilling prepare your chimmichurri: chop the herbs finely just before you use them so that they are at their best (keep them in water before this, as you would flowers!). Add to the vinegar, garlic and shallot and stir thoroughly. Add the oil, whisking with a fork as you do. Season with sea salt to taste. Leave it sit for about 10 minutes before serving.
  • Serve the picanha sliced with some chimmichurri on top.
  • Enjoy!



    Written by Niamh
    Cooking and travelling, and sharing it all with you.