Once you make a trip to Mexico and try ceviche, you will never again look at fish the same. Where can you find ceviche? You can find ceviche served in almost any seafood or beach front restaurant and in a finer dining setting you can find even more sophisticated versions of this simple appetizer. Some of the best ceviches are served right on the side of the street from modest stands in Mexico.
When you think of ceviche, you might think raw fish. This is not true. The fish (or shrimp) in ceviche is actually cooked, just not through heat, but with lime. Lime breaks down the enzymes in the seafood, which has the same effect as cooking it. You can actually witness a shrimp turn from transparent to white if soaked in lime.
The key to a good ceviche
Fresh ingredients are the key to a great ceviche. Find the catch of the day and use fresh produce and you will not be disappointed. There are many types of ceviches. Some fish is cubed, some is minced. Our favourite is the Vallarta ceviche, which is minced. Ceviche is so quick and easy to prepare and it is a please all at many gatherings.
Here is a recipe for a ceviche appetizer for 4-6 persons – Vallarta Style
- Tostadas (flat fried or baked crispy tortillas, totopos (nacho chips) or saltine crackers
- ½ a kilo (1 pound) of white fresh fish of your choice*
- Juice of 10 fresh green lime (if you can’t find lime, lemon will work, but the flavour will modify)
- One cup of fresh chopped cilantro
- One cup of shredded carrots
- One large onion finely diced
- 3 large tomatoes diced in small cubes
- ½ a teaspoon salt
*Any fish can be used.
Chop up the fish finely (or mince). Squeeze lime juice onto the fish and let marinate for 20 minutes. Meanwhile dice the remainder of the ingredients. Once you see the texture and color of the fish change from transparent to moderately white, add all the ingredients together. Mix well and serve immediately!
Ceviche can last in the fridge for one to two days but the tomatoes will lose their zing.
Have fun, and if you have a ceviche recipe to share with us, please leave it in the comments box below.