While believed to have originated along the Pacific coast of Peru, ceviche is a popular dish among many South and Central American countries. This relatively basic seafood salad generally involves the blending of raw fish cut into bite sized pieces, citrus juice, vegetables, and seasonings; although a wide variety of fish, shellfish, and crustaceans can be used. Quickly gaining popularity in the states, this citrus-based seafood salad is most commonly crafted with orange, lemon and lime juice. It is the citric acid that “cooks” the seafood without heat while also softening the fibers and adding flavor. The citrus juice enables a chemical reaction when it comes in contact with the seafood, creating a firm and opaque finished product. Because citric acid does not kill bacteria as well as heat it’s important to start with only the freshest, cleanest seafood possible. While many recipes call for lengthy marinating times, two-hours will generally suffice. Any longer and the citrus flavoring will overpower this succulent seafood treat. In South America, ceviche is typically served at lunch as a light snack and many ceviche restaurants (cevicherias) are closed by 4 p.m. as the morning’s catch is no longer fresh by late afternoon. Now extremely popular and trendy in the United States, many choose to experiment with unique ingredients including starfruit, passion fruit, coconut milk, octopus, tuna, avocado, and mango to name a few. I chose to keep this recipe rather simple, but when preparing your own fresh creation, feel free to be as imaginative as possible.
- 1/2 lb. fresh snapper (can be substituted with any white fish)
- 1/4 lb. peeled and de-veined shrimp
- 1/4 lb. scallops
- 2 tablespoons ginger, burnoise
- 1 tablespoon yellow chili paste
- 2 jalapenos, diced
- 1 pint orange juice
- 1/2 pint lime juice
- 1/2 pint lemon juice
- 1/2 large red onion, julienne
- 1/2 blood orange, sliced
- fresh cilantro, diced
- fresh celery, burnoise
- salt & pepper to taste
Create a puree of burnoise celery, diced cilantro, diced jalapenos and yellow chili paste.
Cut fish, shrimp and scallops into 1/2–inch cubes and season with salt. Place in refrigerator and let sit for 15-minutes. In a large bowl combine fresh seafood, puree, and julienned onion, orange juice, lemon juice, lime juice, burnoise ginger, and sliced blood orange. Cover and place in refrigerator for two-hours. Before serving garnish with cilantro and corn nuts.