Culinista Kitchen®, Recipes & Cooking
What is Ceviche?
by The Culinistas
We couldn’t be more thrilled you asked! Ceviche is a Latin American dish featuring citrus-cooked fish, chilies, herbs, spices, and a variety of toppings or “mix-ins”. Ceviche has Peruvian roots, but you can find unique styles of ceviche in Mexico, Ecuador, Chile, Costa Rica, the Philippines and many other coastal countries.We’ve eaten a bowl for lunch on many a summer day, or served it as an appetizer before getting settled for dinner. We’ve noshed on it over rice and in a taco as well as scooped on endive & balanced on the tip of a chip.
Since the raw fish in ceviche is cooked by curing rather than over a flame, ceviche is an excellent dish to make with young ones or as an interactive element to your next dinner party. We recommend slicing and dicing a variety of mix ins and allowing each person to select their toppings. When deciding how to assemble your own ceviche bar, here’s what you should consider.
1. Fish & Shellfish
Pick a protein that can stand up to the ceviche method of cooking. Snapper, sea bass, and shrimp are all traditional options. You can also use thinly sliced scallops, perch, mahi mahi, or grouper. Buy the freshest fish you can get your hands on. If you’re looking for a vegetarian option for yourself or guests, consider coconut mea:, it mimics the texture of firm white fish.
Many traditional ceviches use chopped onion, bell peppers, or avocados: all solid selects. We’re big fans of using charred yellow summer squash to keep things hyperseasonal and to bring an added element of texture & flavor.
We’ve been known to sneak citrus supremes into our ceviches. Not only are they beautiful, but they aid in the cooking process. Green apple is also a great way to bring sweetness to your ceviche with an added crunch.
You’ll need a bit of a kick to keep things balanced. Finely diced jalapenos, serranos, or fresnos make all the difference. If you’re not ready for fresh chilies, a pinch of high quality cayenne should do the trick.
While we’d love to shout cilantro from the rooftops, we understand that some are genetically predisposed to experience a soapy, rather than fresh, tasting herb. We’re big fans of basil and mint as alternatives.
Your marinade should include lots of citrus whether its lemon, lime, grapefruit or some combination of the three. Let your ceviche marinate for an hour to ensure the fish is properly cured. If you’re looking to make an aguachile, which is different than a ceviche, you’ll want to blend up your citrus and chilis in water and pour on directly before serving.
Thank you to Sylvie Rosokoff for the beautiful photo.