Treat of the Week: Ceviche

Filed under Health & Lifestyle on October 1, 2014

Football season is here! But forget the pizza, set aside the nachos and don't even look at those buffalo wings. We are posting a yummy game day treat recipe in honor of the season. No matter what team you are cheering for you'll be eating good with this idea!

Ceviche

Healthy, light, and oh-so delicious – ceviche (pronounced see-bee-tcheh) is a seemingly fancy yet simple treat that will undoubtedly impress any football fan. Ceviche is made up of bite-sized raw fish, soaked in citrus juice which partially cooks the meat. A popular dish south of the border, it is perfect to serve as an appetizer or a party snack alongside a refreshing beer or cocktail. Although it is easy to prepare, there are a few important rules to follow in order to make the perfect ceviche.

Rule 1: Choosing the Right Fish

There is a wide variety of seafood options to choose from when preparing ceviche. The most popular fish used are semi-firm white flesh ocean fish such as sea bass, bream grouper or flounder because they take well to the curing process. Shrimp, razor clams and mussels are among the shellfish options you can choose to make your ceviche, alongside squid, octopus and scallops. However, keep in mind that it is best to avoid using oily fish such as mackerel, bluefish and sardines. Fresh water fish such as salmon, trout and cat fish also don't make the best ceviche although it boils down to preference.

Rule 2: The Fresher, the Better

It is essential to use fresh seafood when making ceviche at home. Here at Pure Food Fish Market, we package and ship your order overnight from our store in Seattle to ensure that you receive the freshest seafood possible. When purchasing whole fish, tall-tale signs of freshness is a glossy and metallic flesh, vibrant red gills and the eyes should be bright and clear. While determining the freshness of fillet is a bit more difficult than that of a whole fish, there are clear signs to look for. A fresh fillet should be a vibrant color. When pressed with fingers, the meat of the fish should bounce back rather than remained indented. If there is liquid in the fillet package, it should be clear rather than milky. Lastly, take a whiff of the fillet – any hints of ammonia or odor is a bad sign. In order to maintain freshness, make sure you store your fish over ice in the refrigerator or in the freezer until its ready to use.

Rule 3: Use the Right Amount of Citrus for the Right Amount of Time

The beauty of ceviche is that it doesn't require a stove top, oven or grill – citrus juice does all the work for you. Limes and lemons are the main citrus elements used for marinating, but Seville oranges and grapefruit also works because of their high acid levels. Ceviche requires the ratio of about 1/2 cup of citrus juice to 1 pound of fish, to ensure it is properly cured. The fish should ideally marinate in the refrigerator for 10-20 minutes – anything under 10 minutes and the fish may still be raw, anything over 20 minutes and the fish may be overcooked.

Now that you've learned the rules, here is a simple, easy-to-make ceviche recipe for your gameday pleasure:

Using 1 pound of fish of your choice, prepare by evenly slicing it into 1/2 inch or thin bite-sized pieces. Combine thinly sliced red onion, jalapenos peppers and chili peppers with 1/2 cup of citrus juice, and season with a generous amount of salt and pepper. Combine the mixture and fish in a large bowl and let marinade in the fridge for 10-20 minutes. Serve immediately for prime freshness, with a garnish of chopped cilantro on top.

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