As you might have understood from the last two posts I am still on vacation in Mexico. Today is our last day here and I finally was able to put together a nice local recipe that can be easily made in many other countries, including the US.
I grew up in a beach town in Italy and the love of fish runs deep in my veins. Now I live inland and away from the ocean, so I do not get to eat fresh saltwater fish as often as I’d like. While here in Mexico I ate fish every single day, giving my body a welcome change from all the meat we usually consume. A varied diet is very important so that your body will not develop food sensitivities!
Back to our Tropical Ceviche; while here I sampled as many different kinds of Ceviche as possible, and this one recipe stood out to me because of its mild flavor and unusual combinations.
The recipe calls for Grouper, which is fished widely in the US. If yo have no access to super fresh Grouper, you can substitute it with sashimi quality, fresh sea-bass.
As it might not be possible to get day-fresh seafood where you live, you can still enjoy this Tropical Ceviche using frozen pre-cooked shrimp and octopus that has been defrosted, cleaned and steamed or boiled, then marinated the same as the fresh fish would.
- 1 cup boiled octopus meat, cut in small rounds.
- 1 cup cooked, peeled small shrimp
- ½ pound fresh, sashimi quality grouper (or sea-bass) filet
- ½ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
- ½ cup fresh passion fruit pulp (or bottled juice)
- 2 cups mango (about 12 ounces), peeled and cut into small cubes
- 1 small purple onion, cut in very small pieces (1/4 inch)
- 1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded and cut in small cubes
- The pulp of 1 young coconut OR ½ cup coconut cream
- 1 cascabel chile fresh or dried
- 1 fresh habanero chile
- ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- ¼ cup fresh mint, chopped
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Mix the lime juice, the passion fruit pulp in a non reactive (non-metal) bowl.
- Clean the habanero chile from seeds and chop in small pieces, you can add as much as you like to the bowl, checking for spiciness.
- Remove seeds from the cascabel chile and grind to a powder, add to the bowl.
- Cut the fish in small cubes and submerge in the bowl, making sure it is covered with the juices.
- After about 2 hours add the shrimp and the octopus, let marinate another hour.
- Now you can either drain the fish, for a drier ceviche of leave all the juices for a wetter version.
- Open the young coconut, drain and save the water for drinking, scoop out the soft pulp.
- Cut the pulp in small pieces.
- Now you can add the chopped onion, cucumber, mango, the chopped cilantro and mint to the ceviche.
- Add the coconut pulp or the coconut cream and stir well.
- Add salt and fresh black pepper to taste.
- Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves and serve immediately!