Ceviche is a traditional Latin American dish that involves ‘cooking’ small pieces of raw fish in citrus juices, then adding other ingredients such as onion, avocado, chili, tomatoes and cilantro (coriander leaf).
However if you make it with shrimp as I have here, you must cook the shrimp first. On that basis, you might want to think of this as a spicy shrimp cocktail with lots of bright flavors that dance on you tongue – or perhaps ‘Ceviche for Beginners’, as there isn’t a piece of raw fish in sight.
Either way, it makes the most wonderful appetizer served with corn tortilla chips.
You can cook the shrimp ahead and you’ll need to allow a total of 1.5 hrs before it’s ready to eat. Otherwise it’s really easy to make and this version is a favorite.
(Serves 4-6 as an appetizer)
1lb (half a kilo) of raw fresh shrimp, de-veined and shells removed
2 tablespoons of sea salt
2 quarts of water
The combined juice of 2 lemons, 2 limes and 2 oranges
1 cup (240ml measure) of hothouse (English) cucumber, peeled and cut into half inch (2 cm) dice
1/2 cup (120ml measure) of finely chopped red onion
2 jalapeno or serrano chilies, seeded and finely chopped
1 cup (240ml measure) of de-seeded chopped tomatoes
1 firm-ripe avocado, chopped into 1/2 inch (2cm) dice
1 heaped tablespoon of chopped fresh cilantro (coriander leaf)
2 teaspoons of chopped fresh oregano
1/4 cup (60ml) of extra-v olive oil
Sea salt – about 1/4 teaspoon
Bring a large pot (2 quarts) of water to the boil, add 2 tablespoons of sea salt followed by the fresh cleaned shrimp. Immediately remove the pot from the heat and allow the shrimp to sit for 3 minutes to cook through, then drain and allow them to cool slightly.
Chop the shrimp into 1/2 inch (2cm) chunks and put them in a *glass or plastic bowl along with the combined citrus juices, the diced cucumber, red onion and chili – refrigerate for 1 hour.
Remove from the fridge and add all the other ingredients, giving it a good stir. Let it rest covered at room temp for 30 minutes to allow all the flavors to develop.
Serve in individual glasses with a small spoon and some corn chips for scooping.
*Use a glass or plastic bowl rather than metal which can cause the flavors to adjust – and not in a good way.