The Anatomy of a Great Ceviche
Ceviche is the art of marinating fish in citrus juice, not just flavoring the fish, but cooking it. The colorful dish is perfect in the middle of summer, or anytime of the year if you live in sunny Florida! Ceviche is simple, but can be difficult to master. Luckily, we serve a tasty one at North Beach Fish Camp, so you don’t even have to try. Whether the meat of choice is sea bass or shrimp (or countless others), ceviche is our favorite appetizer to cool off during a hot day!
Use the Right Kind of Fish
Along with scallops and shrimp, the best fish to use in ceviche is a semi-firm white fish from the ocean. Always use the freshest fish possible, because older or pre-frozen fish loses it’s flavor and color, becoming opaque. One of the most important components of ceviche is the rich color and flavor of the ingredients, which can only be achieved by using fresh fish straight from the ocean.
Prepare the Other Ingredients Correctly
Surprise! Ceviche is a lot more than just juice and fish. The dish gets a lot of its bright colors from the red and green bell peppers, which must be diced to a uniform size in order for the dish to work. Even dicing doesn’t just make the dish look better, it’s necessary so all the ingredients can marinade evenly. When you’re slicing up your peppers and onions, be sure to pick a size and stick to it. The flavor will be much better, and the presentation will be, too.
Keep the Ingredients Apart (Until the End)
All the ingredients that go into a ceviche have complete different consistencies and textures. It’s pretty obvious that peppers are a whole lot more dense than a flaky piece of fish, and that’s something to remember for the marinating process.
It’s tough, but absolutely necessary to strike a balance between over-marinaded and just marinaded enough. We recommend marinating the fish for 10 to 20 minutes, any more time and you run the risk of the fish falling apart. This time frame perfectly ‘cooks’ the meat and absorbs the juice. On the flipside, under-marinating the fish will leave it appearing undercooked.
Get the Ratios Right
Here’s a rule of thumb: ½ cup of lemon or lime juice for every pound of fish. This is the perfect amount to cure the fish and result in the right consistency and flavor. Because this dish has so few ingredients, it’s incredibly important to use the freshest ingredients. Always, always, always use fresh squeezed juice.
Ceviche is a finicky dish to try making on your own at home, but that’s no reason not to give it a try. But there’s one thing we can promise you, our ceviche is the best you’ll ever have! Summer or winter, stop by North Beach Fish Camp for the Ceviche of the Day served with as many soda crackers as your heart desires. Exactly how it should be.
Tip! Our ceviche is best served with a great drink. Here are our favorite pairings at the Fish Camp:
Fish Camp Pimm’s Cup