Sunday, August 30, 2009

Cooking Without Heat: Ceviche


We had our first taste of ceviche on our honeymoon in Costa Rica. Ceviche, which is a common dish there, is made up of fresh fish and a mixture of tomatoes, cilantro, onions, peppers and lime juice. The fish is actually cooked in the lime juice marinade. It is commonly served with crackers and Lizano tabasco sauce. I would describe it as "Summertime on a cracker"; the combination of the tangy lime juice and vegetables with the texture of the fish is delightful.

Upon returning home from our trip that summer, Chris made it his project to recreate this tasty dish using fish he'd caught at a local lake. Thankfully, he loves to fish, so fresh fish is usually on hand at our home. Each time he makes it, the taste brings back memories from our Costa Rican adventures. You can have a taste of Costa Rica too:

Fresh Fish Fillets (half of quart size ziptop bag full)
1 Small Sweet Yellow Onion
3 Tomatoes
15 sprigs Cilantro
2 Jalapeno Peppers
1 Green Bell Pepper
Juice from 3 Limes

1. Dice / Finely chop the onions, tomatoes and peppers. Remove the stems from the cilantro; keep the leaves. You can roll the leaves up to make chopping easier. Slice the fish fillets into thin slices (approx. 1/8" thick.)


2. Marinate the ingredients. We use a quart size ziptop bag for the fish and a large gallon size bag for the rest of the chopped vegetables. Add a dash of salt and pepper to the bag of fish and then add about 3/4 of the lime juice to that bag. Add the remaining lime juice to the bag of vegetables.
Allow to marinate in the refrigerator for at least an hour.


3. After the fish has "cooked", it will turn white. It's ready to combine with the bag of veggies. You can combine all ingredients together in the large ziptop bag and keep in the fridge until ready to serve.


The dish is best when served the day it is made. Keep chilled and serve cold with saltines; kick it up with a dash of the hot sauce of your choice.


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