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Video: How to make Ceviche!
- Ocean fish – look for wild red snapper, corvina, sea bass, mahi-mahi, halibut, scallops or shrimp. Tilapia will work in a pinch, but it is typically farmed. I try to stay away from farmed fish, but up to you.
- Limes- use fresh lime juice to cure the fish. FRESH IS BEST. Choose ripe limes– the more tender they are, the more ripe- so give them a good squeeze before buying. Rock-hard limes produce little juice and are overly tart.
- Red onion- Red adds nice color here, but yellow, sweet or white onions all work.
- Tomatoes – I love using cherry or grape tomatoes here for an extra sweet flavor.
- Cucumber – thinned-skinned cucumbers don’t need to be peeled. English, Turkish, Persian, etc.
- Fresh Cilantro- a must! But if you must sub, go with Italian parsley. Lime juice really mitigates the “soapy” flavor for those of you who have that gene. 🙂
- Jalapeno Peppers- and heat and a delicious “freshness.”
- Optional addition: avocado, radishes.
Best Fish for Ceviche
Most wild ocean fish or shrimp or scallops will work perfectly in ceviche. River fish or farmed fish are not recommended. Tilapia tastes OK in ceviche, but it is typically farmed- so up to you; I’ve used it in a pinch.
- sea bass
- red snapper
- Wild Pacific rockfish
How to make Ceviche (step-by-step)
Slice the onions and place in a bowl. Add the salt and lime juice and let these marinate while you continue- this will help remove the bitterness from the onion.
Cut the fish into 1/2-inch to 3/4-inch cubes and toss them with the marinating onions.
Add the remaining ingredients- cucumber, tomatoes and cilantro and give a good toss. If adding avocado, wait until serving to add it.
Refrigerate for 45-60 minutes. The longer you let the fish cure in the marinade, the more “cooked” through the ceviche will become. I find 45 minutes is perfect.
Ways to serve Ceviche
- Mini Ceviche Tostados
- Ceviche served in a coconut
- Mini Ceviche appetizer cups or shot glasses
- Ceviche lettuce cups
- Plated as a first course.
Or simply serve Ceviche in a serving bowl with tortilla chips or lettuce cups.
- What is ceviche? Ceviche is fresh raw fish marinated or “cooked” in lime juice, most often with onion, tomatoes, cilantro and salt. It hails from the coastal regions of Central and South America, popular from Mexico down to Peru and beyond. There are many versions, and depending on where you are, it will take on the local flavors.
- Is Ceviche Safe to eat? Ceviche, if made with fresh fish is absolutely safe to eat. Think sushi! The lime juice cooks the ceviche on the outer edges and the longer it marinates the longer it “cooks”.
- How do you know if the fish is fresh enough to eat raw? It won’t smell fishy. It will smell clean and fresh with have a subtly sweet flavor.
- How long should Ceviche be marinated? Marination time can be anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the size of the pieces, but roughly 45-60 minutes for 3/4 inch pieces is a good rule of thumb. Remember when using a good quality, fresh, wild fish, it is not imperative that the fish is cooked all the way through, a little rawness is actually really quite good! Think sushi!
- How can you tell if ceviche is cooked long enough? The fish will look opaque on the outside, instead of translucent. If you prefer it cooked through more, you can marinate for 2 hours or more! Longer marinating will tend to make the fish chewier. See what you like best. There is no “right way”. If it tastes too raw for your own tastes, just marinate it longer.
Can Ceviche be made ahead?
Yes! That being said, Ceviche is best made fresh on the day of serving- and is best up to 4 hours before serving- but I do save the leftovers for the next day. The fish will continue to cook in the lime juice, so the texture will change but the flavors are still great. I’ve been known to eat Ceviche 2-3 days after making -it won’t go bad, if kept in a cold refrigerator.
Give it a whirl and let us know how you like it!
More recipes you might like:
- Hearts of Palm Ceviche (Vegan!)
- Shrimp Ceviche Verde
- 20 Healthy Fish and Seafood Recipes!
- Poke Bowls
- Peruvian Ceviche
- 35 Fresh and Tasty Mexican Recipes
How to make the Best Ceviche! Ceviche is made with fresh fish (or shrimp) cured with lime juice, then tossed with onions, cilantro, tomato and cucumber. Serve it as an appetizer with tortilla chips or as a light, refreshing summer meal.
- 1/2 a red onion, thinly sliced, with the grain.
- 1– 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, start with 1, add more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 3/4 cup fresh lime juice (4-6 limes) freshly squeezed ( try to use ripe limes)
- 1–2 garlic cloves very finely minced (use a garlic press)
- 1 fresh serrano or jalapeño chili pepper seeded and very finely chopped. Start conservatively, more to taste.
- 1 pound fresh fish- sea bass, red snapper, corvina, halibut, dorado, escolar, mahi-mahi, tilapia, or hamachi – diced into 1/2 inch cubes.
- 1/4–1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, sliced or cut in half (or 1 cup diced tomatoes)
- 1 cup diced cucumber
- 1 tablespoon olive oil (optional)
- optional: 1 semi-firm Avocado, diced, or make the Avocado Sauce
Serve with tortilla chips, or lettuce cups, or see more options in the post above.
Optional Avocado sauce:
- Slice the red onion thinly with the grain, and toss in a bowl with salt, pepper and lime juice, coating well.
- Add the fish, garlic and fresh chilies, and gently mix.
- Add the tomatoes, cucumber, cilantro and olive oil, and give a stir and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving (45-60 minutes is ideal). The longer you marinate the firmer and more “cooked” the fish will become.
- Before serving, taste and adjust the salt and heat. Add more salt or chilies if you like. If adding avocado, gently fold it in right before serving- you may need to add a pinch more salt.
- To make the optional Avocado Sauce, blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth, adding a bit more water or oil, if needed to get the blades going.
To Serve: Serve ceviche in a big bowl with tortilla chips on the side, or as mini tostadas (on a round chip or homemade) or make ceviche tacos or ceviche lettuce cups. Ceviche can also be served in small appetizer cups or shot glasses with a mini fork. Or plate it up with a little Avocado Sauce as a salad course.
To make crispy mini tostadas: lightly spray mini corn tortillas (3-inch tortillas) with olive oil and season generously with salt. Bake in a 300 F oven on a sheet pan until crisp (not chewy, but crisp like a cracker) about 25 -30 minutes, turning halfway through. Let cool completely.
- Serving Size: -includes one diced avocado
- Calories: 149
- Sugar: 3.2 g
- Sodium: 637.1 mg
- Fat: 6.3 g
- Saturated Fat: 1.3 g
- Carbohydrates: 9 g
- Fiber: 3.1 g
- Protein: 15.5 g
- Cholesterol: 31 mg
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