FOOD & WINE

In celebration of ceviche on National Ceviche Day

June 28, 2015
Cooking class with Penelope Alzamora (A Taste of Peru), Barranco, Peru

On National Ceviche Day, we celebrate one of our favorite Peruvian dishes.

Peruvian cuisine is growing in popularity, inspiring new restaurants and securing a prominent spot on the menus of fine dining establishments around the globe. Ceviche is one of the most popular Peruvian dishes and one of our favorites.

Ceviche is “cooked” in an unconventional way. Raw fish or seafood is marinated in citrus juice (usually lemon or lime) until the fish develops the appearance of having been cooked. The fish becomes firm and opaque but since this method doesn’t kill bacteria or parasites, it’s essential that chefs or home cooks use raw ingredients that are absolutely fresh.

The dish is popular—not only in Peru—but also in many other coastal cities across Central and South America. We’ve tasted ceviche in Peru, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador and the U.S. It may be a case of “new wine in old bottles” but no two ceviches are the same. Preparations vary widely based on the availability of local ingredients, regional traditions, and the fancy of the chefs.

Thus, we’ve tasted it made with different types of fish and seafood with an array of different sauces and garnishes, served in a variety of presentations. Some ceviche is served dry; other times, it’s served immersed in some of the liquids used in marination. Many times, it’s accompanied with local vegetables like sweet potato, boiled potato, or avocado.

We’ve taken classes in ceviche-making; enjoyed sampling it at restaurants, resorts, and markets; and have made it at home. We’ve had ceviche as a snack, as an appetizer and a main course. Typically, it’s served with tortilla chips or salted crackers, and accompanied by a chilled glass of beer or a Pisco Sour.

Since June 28th is National Ceviche Day in Peru, we wanted to celebrate by reminiscing about some of the wonderful ceviche dishes we’ve enjoyed in the course of our travels.

Our favorite ceviches at resorts

Lunch at Secrets The Vine, Cancun

Ceviche at Secrets The Vine, Cancun

Ceviche at Marquis Los Cabos

Ceviche at Marquis Los Cabos

Ceviche at lunch at Marquis Los Cabos

Ceviche at Marquis Los Cabos

Ceviche at Grand Velas, Riviera Maya

Ceviche at Grand Velas, Riviera Maya

Ceviche at Tequila Tasting at Las Ventanas al Paraiso, Los Cabos

Ceviche at Tequila Tasting at Las Ventanas al Paraiso, a Rosewood Resort, Los Cabos

Ceviche at One&Only Palmilla, Los Cabos

Ceviche at One&Only Palmilla, Los Cabos

Ceviche at One&Only Palmilla, Los Cabos

Ceviche at One&Only Palmilla, Los Cabos

Ceviche “cooking classes”

Cooking class with Penelope Alzamora (A Taste of Peru), Barranco, Peru

Cooking class with Penelope Alzamora (A Taste of Peru), Barranco, Peru

Assembling the ingredients for ceviche at Pacoche Lodge, Manta, Ecuador

Assembling the ingredients for outdoor ceviche class at Pacoche Lodge, Manta, Ecuador

Ceviche fresh from the market

Ceviche in takeaway cups at Coquimbo Market in Chile

Ceviche in takeaway cups at Coquimbo Market in Chile


Have we whet your appetite?

In celebration on National Ceviche Day, the Peruvian Avocado Commission has made this recipe available for those who want to try it at home.

Peruvian Ceviche with Avocado (Credit: Peruvian Avocado Commission)

Peruvian Ceviche with Avocado (Credit: Peruvian Avocado Commission)

Peruvian Avocado Ceviche

SERVINGS — 4 Servings

PREP TIME — 20 Minutes

COOK TIME — 0 Minute

TOTAL TIME — 2-3 Hours

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 (6 ounce) Halibut steaks
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice, divided
  • 3/4 cup red & yellow grape tomatoes halved
  • 1/2 cup slivered red onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 to 1 jalapeño pepper, stemmed, seeded, and minced
  • 2 ripe Peruvian avocados, peeled, pitted, & cubed 1/8 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • Torn, fresh cilantro leaves

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Cut halibut into ½-inch cubes and place in a bowl with 3/4 of a cup of lime juice or enough to cover fish.
  • Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours or until fish is opaque.
  • Drain liquid, then stir in remaining lime juice and other ingredients.
  • Serve immediately.

 Have you enjoyed a memorable ceviche dish?


Some related posts previously on More Time To Travel:

  • Reply
    Debbra Dunning Brouillette
    June 28, 2015 at 9:33 pm

    This is quite a collection of ceviche dishes! I can tell you are a big fan of them. I didn’t realize it was National Ceviche Day! In answer to your question above, YES, I have enjoyed several types of marinated fish dishes. Most recently, I was served a wonderful parrotfish ceviche, marinated with orange and lime juice, and finished with coconut milk at the Four Seasons Nevis. I just wrote about my Dive and Dine experience there, which included diving for lobster and other fish, along with the executive chef. Then we returned to shore where he prepared grilled lobster as well as the amazing ceviche dish. It is the latest blog post on my site, if you’d like to read it. My other favorite ceviche type dishes (although they are called by different names) are poisson cru, which I had in Moorea and Bora Bora, and kokoda, a very similar marinated raw fish dish I enjoyed in Fiji.

  • Reply
    Susan Moore
    June 28, 2015 at 9:53 pm

    Your photos are making me so hungry! I LOVE ceviche! I had no idea there was a National Ceviche Day – but hey, ¡Olé! I will celebrate 🙂
    I had some great ceviche when I was in Buenos Aires – many of the staff at the restaurant were from Peru. I think I need to go study the origins of ceviche and spend some time in Peru!

  • Reply
    Donna Janke
    June 28, 2015 at 10:42 pm

    I have never eaten ceviche. After reading your post, I’m thinking it might be time I give it a try.

  • Reply
    Marilyn Jones
    June 28, 2015 at 11:11 pm

    How interesting! I haven’t traveled in Peru and live in such a rural area where there are no Peruvian restaurants that I haven’t tried Ceviche before, but I certainty will when I get the opportunity; your photos make the dish look so inviting!!

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      June 30, 2015 at 8:13 am

      There are many wonderful Peruvian dishes. Another favorite of mine is lomo saltado.

      In fact, there aren’t that many Peruvian restaurants in Manhattan. We enjoyed a very good one in Boston, too.

      I hope we get back to Peru some day!

  • Reply
    santafetraveler
    June 28, 2015 at 11:43 pm

    Thanks for sharing all those beautiful cerviche photos in honor of Peruvian Cerviche Day. We just had a trio of cerviche at Santa Fe’s Anasazi Restaurant made by an Argentinian chef.

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      June 30, 2015 at 8:18 am

      Samples are a great way to find out which styles you like…almost like a flight of wines or beer!

  • Reply
    Paula McInerney
    June 29, 2015 at 9:03 am

    I LOVE ceviche and am totally drooling at all of these amazing dishes

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      June 30, 2015 at 8:19 am

      Ceviche and raw fish does make some people queasy but even lettuce can harbor health dangers:-)

  • Reply
    Sand In My Suitcase
    June 29, 2015 at 10:19 am

    Looks like you love your ceviche! We have to confess that we’re less enamoured with the dish – while we’re tuna and salmon sushi fans, we prefer our shrimp and octopus cooked. Maybe ceviche is an acquired taste?

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      June 30, 2015 at 8:23 am

      Well that’s a first. Some people who avoid raw fish don’t like ceviche but haven’t heart of not liking the taste before. Let’s make a date to meet in Los Cabos so I can twist your arm:-).

  • Reply
    Betsy Wuebker | PassingThru
    June 29, 2015 at 11:57 am

    We love ceviche, but these iterations make us realize we’ve only scratched the surface in terms of its different variations. What a delicious set of photographs to whet the appetite indeed! And who knew there was a National Ceviche Day? Well done.

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      June 30, 2015 at 8:25 am

      As you know, there’s a day for everything:-) And this one is another great excuse for eating ceviche~

  • Reply
    noel
    June 29, 2015 at 12:49 pm

    well you really love your ceviche and what gorgeous presentation, I would definitely want to try them at all of those locations.

  • Reply
    Josie
    June 29, 2015 at 2:37 pm

    Hi Irene,

    The KEY really is to have the freshest fish available — and then it is truly wonderful, refreshing, and exotic. I love all the variations of ceviche you chose for this fun post.

    Wishing you safe and happy travels,
    Josie

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      June 30, 2015 at 8:28 am

      Definitely agree! Same for sushi and sashimi~
      You also need to trust the place where it is being served.

  • Reply
    Jo
    June 29, 2015 at 2:54 pm

    Well I’d never ever heard of ‘Ceviche’ before and you’ve had so many! They all look lovely … aha, but now I have a recipe, I shall try one and see. Thank you 🙂

  • Reply
    Kay Dougherty
    June 29, 2015 at 3:52 pm

    Oh dear – I should have sent someone a card for National Ceviche Day! I love ceviche and you sure show an impressive array! The best I’ve ever had was in Belize when they guy caught the squid and made the ceviche right there in the boat. Icky but fascinating. Now I want some..

  • Reply
    Suzanne Stavert
    June 29, 2015 at 7:48 pm

    Yes I love ceviche! Your photos are intoxicating! We were in Costa Rica recently and took a Ceviche Class with the chef at the resort and I wrote about it! http://adventuresofemptynesters.com/how-to-make-ceviche-costa-rica-style/ I am hungry now.

  • Reply
    jenny@atasteoftravel
    June 30, 2015 at 2:31 am

    I love ceviche and am tempted to go to Peru just to taste the best. From our gorgeous photos though, it looks as though there are some fabulous ceviche dishes on offer at many other spots. We ate at fabulous Peruvian restaurant in London on our last trip and loved all the dishes, especially the cevich!

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      June 30, 2015 at 9:26 am

      Yes, Peruvian food is becoming so international. We read about several new openings in Barcelona as well.

  • Reply
    Carol Colborn
    June 30, 2015 at 6:19 am

    Never thought there could be so many types of ceviches and that a day is set aside once a year to celebrate it. Perhaps this dish originated in Spain. We have our own version in the Philippines called “kinilaw.” Our Spanish conquistadores must have introduced the dish to us. It has remained part of Filipino cuisine, just like it is now part of Peruvian cuisine. But we use vinegar instead of citrus fruits’ juices.

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      June 30, 2015 at 9:32 am

      Hope I get to taste the vinegar version one day! Sounds yummy!

  • Reply
    Sheryl
    June 30, 2015 at 2:05 pm

    Although I like sushi, something about ceviche does not appeal to me. I don’t know why…maybe it’s because a lot of it I’ve see is served with cilantro(?). And cilantro and me don’t mix 🙂 These are beautiful photos and may just change my mind…

    • Irene S. Levine
      Reply
      Irene S. Levine
      June 30, 2015 at 2:06 pm

      Yes, must be the cilantro because it’s commonly used in ceviche.
      If you come visit, I’ll make you some without cilantro:-)

  • Reply
    jane canapini
    June 30, 2015 at 4:31 pm

    Who knew there was a national ceviche day, and I missed it! But now that it’s summer, I’ll have to just make my own whenever…

  • Reply
    Sue Reddel
    June 30, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    How did I miss National Ceviche Day and on my birthday!! Your photos really make we want to have some ceviche right now. We just happen to have an avocado and halibut to make that yummy sounding Peruvian Avocado Ceviche recipe you’ve included – can’t wait to try it.

  • Reply
    alison abbott
    July 4, 2015 at 10:29 am

    Irene I had no idea there was a National Ceviche Day, but why not, it’s a wonderful way to celebrate the fresh tastes of the sea! I have had some awesome ceviche in the Bahamas and Mexico and tried my hand making it with fresh scallops. Yum. I love the way the lime juice cooks the fish-its just like magic. This is quite a round up you’ve given us. All the more to look forward to.

  • Reply
    Muza-chan
    July 9, 2015 at 2:56 am

    Delicious…

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