Ceviche is one of the healthiest and certainly tastiest ways of preparing fish quickly and easily, and it is a guaranteed crowd pleaser as a main meal or dinner entrée. A knife and a bowl is all you need to create a masterpiece, and it makes a great change from the normal methods of cooking.
This recipe is based heavily on input from master restaurateur Michael Dearth (The Grove, Baduzzi, Don’t joke with a hungry man, etc) so you know it’s got fine pedigree.
If you are not a fan of raw fish or traditional sashimi, you might find that ceviche opens up a new door. The ingredients used have a very tangy flavour, partially ‘cook’ the fish and make eating raw fish a delight even to those that normally screw up their nose at the idea.
This particular recipe combines some really strong acids found in vinegar and lemon juice, and balances that with orange to give a zesty sweet and sour touch.
This recipe works really well either dipping the raw fish and eating immediately, or marinating for a little longer to turn the fish slightly white as it is cooked by the combined juices.
Quality fish flesh, and fresh ingredients are essential to make a great ceviche.
For best results, immediately ice your catch as it comes on board in salt ice, or a salt ice slurry. This is critical to the end result. The best dish will be made from fish caught on the day, or the following day. Some white fleshed fish such as snapper actually taste better on day two as the flesh ‘sets’ and firms up for a brief period.
The best fish for this recipe include, tuna, trevally, kingfish, snapper, john dory, gurnard, and kahawai, not necessarily in that order but personal preference aside, close!
Preparing the ceviche
As with the fish, fresh ingredients are vital for this recipe, so you can forget the packaged ginger and coriander, you will need the real deal.
Start with very finely chopping the red onions, garlic, coriander, capsicum, and tomato into a bowl with some freshly grated ginger.
Add the olive oil, sesame oil, rice vinegar, lemon juice, lime juice, soy sauce, fish sauce, and a squeeze of fresh orange juice.
The orange is vital to give sweetness and offset the other tart ingredients.
A few drops of tabasco or chilli sauce give the recipe a gentle zing. Another option is finely chopped fresh chilli.
Don’t overdo anything.
The key to this recipe working, is to let all of the flavours complement each other and create a dynamic taste explosion, rather than blowing out as a chilli challenge.
Serve the dish either by itself with fish on the side, or immediately add the fish and tip onto a serving plate. If you are taking the latter route, make sure you add the fish and serve at the same time, don’t prepare earlier or the fish will become fully cured and well past ideal.
Here’s about the right balance for a serving for two/three people. Taste as you go, and add more or less to tune to your personal perfection.
Get into it!
Half a medium red onion
Handful of fresh coriander
1/2 a fresh red capsicum
Clove of fresh garlic
1 tablespoon of finely grated fresh ginger
½ a medium tomato
Optional fresh chilli to taste
Half an orange finely chopped
½ cup rice wine vinegar
Juice of 1 large squeezed lemon
Juice of 1 squeezed lime
Juice of half an orange
Tablespoon of soy sauce
8 drops of fish sauce
5 drops tabasco sauce
Tablespoon olive oil
8 drops sesame oil