5 tips I learned to make the best ceviche

Summer is for ceviche. And I've learned that the best ceviche requires you do five simple things. Let me let you in on the secrets.

The best ceviche

Growing up in Mexico, my family ate ceviche on an almost weekly basis. It was the type of ceviche common in the Yucatan, which is different from Peruvian ceviche or Ecuadorian ceviche. All are fish marinated in lime juice and all have something to teach us.

The perfect hot-weather food, ceviche is quick, simple and requires no cooking. And since it's so easy, it has become our Monday night staple. But in order for it to be good—like really good—I've learned you have to do the following five things:

1. Mince the onion

Biting into a big piece of red onion will ruin anyone's day. It'll certainly ruin your ceviche. You just want a hint of spicy raw onion, not a mouthful of it. That's the Ecuadorian way.

2. Add more cilantro than you think necessary

Like a good guacamole, ceviche needs cilantro—lots of it. More than you would typically think to put in it. I'm talking like half a bunch for two servings. Trust me, it makes a difference.

3. Give it some spice

Adding a few drops of Tabasco (or any other favorite hot sauce) will give you ceviche just the right amount of kick. It also adds flavor from the vinegar and spices.

4. Use good quality fish

Ceviche is all about the fish, so this isn't the dish to skimp on quality. I found that a nice, thick piece of halibut is one of the best choices. There's no taco and slaw to hide behind here. 

5. Mix up the citrus

This one I learned from the ceviche they make in Peru. Adding a little orange juice or lemon juice in addition to the lime adds a nice, subtle flavor that compliments the lime. Orange juice also adds a perfect little sweetness that can stand up to the spice.

Tomatoes
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COOKING NOTES

This recipe calls for 5 limes but depending on how juicy your limes are, you may need more or less. You simply want enough lime juice to cover the fish. 

PREP TIME: 15 Minutes COOK TIME: 1 Hour TOTAL TIME: 1 Hour, 15 Minutes

SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS

1 pound halibut, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 pound scallops, quartered
5 limes, juiced
1/2 an orange, juiced
1 small red onion, minced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 teaspoon salt (more, to taste)
3-6 drops Tabasco sauce

INSTRUCTIONS

  1.  In a large bowl, pour the lime juice over the fish until all the pieces are submerged. Let marinate until all the fish is opaque, about 1 hour.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and gently mix to combine. Add more salt, as needed.
  3. Serve on its own or with tortilla chips.