This post was written by my foodie sister Robin, who is now sharing all of her favorite recipes and kitchen tips regularly on the new “Make It and Love It – in the KITCHEN” portion of this blog. Try a few of her recipes…your belly will thank you! -Ashley
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Well the summer heat is on! Or — that’s what I hear. I recently move to Juneau, AK and I am still wearing jackets. But we have had a few days where you need to take off your jacket for a little while. (Haha…..yeah, I know. 70 degree weather all summer is nothing like the heat I grew up in.) But for the rest of you, when it is sweltering outside, you really don’t want to be slaving away at the stove—and you just want something light and tasty for your meals. Well, this is exactly that!
This is called Ceviche (pronounced in English suh-vee-chay).
There is something about those super hot summers, when all you want is watermelon and popsicles all day. (Tell me I’m not the only one…) This is perfect for those days.
I crave this even though it isn’t blazing hot up here in Alaska. However, the fish is incredibly plentiful up here in Alaska. And so fresh. I mean, we are literally cooking fish straight from the water. (Have you ever been? It’s amazing up here! And even Ashley who generally doesn’t like fish, comes up here and tries it all!) But mix that delicious and lean fish with fresh herbs, a bit of lime juice, a teeny crunch from a few veggies, a touch of spice…….and mmmmmm, nothing beats this on a summer day!
For those of you who have never had Ceviche, don’t get scared, but it involves “cooking” fish without using a heat source. So how can you cook fish without a heat source? One word: acid. The citric acid in the limes have the power to “cook” the fish meat, which in scientific terms means that the limes denature the protein. However, since there is no heat, you aren’t going to have that fishy smell that lingers in your house for a bit. Win-win, right?
Ceviche is also really versatile. Not only can it stand alone but you can grab some tortilla chips and eat it like salsa, put it in your tacos or tostadas, layer it over rice, stuff some into lettuce wraps, sprinkle over a green salad — and mmmmm, a lot more.
Can I also tell you how easy this is to make? Pretty much you chop it up and let it marinate for about an hour — aaaaaaand, that’s it. BAM! Dinner is ready.
Okay, I’m hungry, let’s get started!
Here are the ingredients that you need:
I want to suggest using fish that is frozen and each fillet is individually packed. I say this because if you buy fish fresh from the supermarket, you can not be sure how long it has been thawed and fish just keeps better frozen and keeps bacteria growth at bay. So, for this recipe, I just pull the fish from the freezer the day before and place it into the refrigerator. Ideally, when it is time to prepare it, it is bendable but still slightly frozen. This is so that when you are cutting it up, it stays cold. After it is chopped, put it back in the refrigerator so that it stays cold while preparing the rest of the ingredients.
Chop and mince all the other ingredients, except for the lime juice. For the habanero pepper, start by mincing 1/4 of the pepper (size of large grape) and see if you can taste the heat. A lot of times I end up putting in more after it has marinated for a while and I check to taste the heat. Also, use gloves or place your hands inside of plastic baggies when cutting it up. It doesn’t matter how many times you wash your hands, the oils stick like glue on your hands and if you touch your eyes or bite your nails… yeah your eyes or mouth will BURN. Lesson learned. :)
Here is everything all mixed together without the lime juice. You can see that the fish is translucent.
Now, squeeze the lime juice over everything.
Mix together well and store in the fridge for an hour. Food safety-wise, I would give it 1 full hour. Some people prefer to let it marinate for less time because they want the fish to be softer — and they don’t mind taking the risk. On the flip side, you can also marinate it longer than an hour if you want it to be more firm. But, after about an hour, you will see that the meat has changed from translucent to opaque. And the fish has a texture as if it has been poached. You might not want to mention to anyone that it was only marinated and see if they can tell. :)
And there you have it — a nice flavorful dish that is incredibly simple to make! And you don’t have to heat up the house to prepare it. Oh, and even more —it’s VERY nutritious. Bonus!
Ceviche – Recipe Card
Chop the fish into bite sized pieces and store in the fridge. Meanwhile, chop and mince up the vegetables (except lime juice). Add the lime juice and salt. Mix well. Store in the refrigerator for an hour. Add ground pepper to taste. Enjoy.