Sunday, 10 October 2010

Monk Fish Ceviche recipe

Several months back we had a hankering for a raw-fish style meal and tried to find a quick and easy recipe.  I'd remembered watching a Jamie Oliver episode where he made ceviche in a matter of minutes with minimal marinating time, so was really surprised to discover pretty much all the recipes I found online required marinating the fish for a minimum of 2 hours.  This is simply not a style of cooking that is compatible with my naturally impatient approach to meal preparation!

We came up with something and I must have hastily scribbled down the recipe, because when I came to make it again tonight, Simon found the piece of paper scrawled with red pen and I spent the next 10 minutes while I prepared dinner, and then again at random intervals for the next couple of hours going " 'SMASH', what on earth did I mean?" as there is a commandment in the middle of the page in solidly printed capital letters  - SMASH.  Weird. And there are ingredients in the list that don't feature in the instructions, then things in the instructions like 'add garlic' when there is no garlic in the ingredient list!!! [later: I re-read the recipe and found garlic powder] I have no idea what was going on there. 

To ensure I have an easier time of it next time, I am going to record how I made tonight's rather delicious ceviche.

For 2 people:

1 fillet of Monk Fish
juice of between 6 and 8 limes (need enough to cover the sliced fish)
2 fresh red chillies
salt (I'm currently using Himalayan  rock salt)
1 spring onion sliced thinly (I would have used a red onion, but didn't have any)
leaves from 3 stalks of coriander
small clove of garlic

  • Rub the fish in salt, then rinse under cold water (apparently this makes the fish 'thirsty' for the marinade. Who knew?)
  • peel and gently crush the garlic clove enough that the inner flesh is exposed, then rub the bowl with the garlic.  finely chop a small amount of the clove - I used about 1/4 - and add to the bowl
  • Chop the chillies finely, removing the seeds, unless you want a lot of heat, add to the bowl
  • add about a teaspoon of salt (yes, a whole teaspoon), then (and this is where that commandment comes in) SMASH. Hehe.  So in more helpful terms, use the back of a spoon to smoosh the ingredients together - I have no idea why, maybe it helps release some of the flavour from the chilli.  It's fun anyway, so just do it.
  • Add the lime juice, stir then taste to check the salt level.  You'll be surprised at how much it tastes like lime and not like salt!  Add salt if necessary until you can pick both flavours easily, but no so that it tastes powerfully salty (not very helpful here am I?)
  • Add the chopped fresh coriander and spring onions (or red onion)
  • Slice the fish into thin strips and add to the marinade, check the salt level again then  leave for 1-2 minutes.
  • Serve! Yep, it's that easy!
(For my future reference - the scrawled recipe from the 1st time says to rub chilli around the bowl - not garlic, and the instruction to 'add garlic' comes after the commandment to SMASH, along with pepper (a pinch).  'dash garlic powder' is in the ingredient list.  There is also a celery stick in the ingredient list, but it's not in the instructions. And I do wonder if I may have used a mix of lemon and lime juice the first time around.)

Cooking, such an adventure.

Tomorrow night, I'm making salmon & ricotta ravioli because a friend told me she remembers once having ravioli with some sort of divine salmon filling when she was in Aussie once and it was so good she can all but still taste it.  Random inspiration. It sounded like a challenge.  I can't resist a challenge.

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