Lionfish Ceviche

Hi foodies and scuba lovers. I recently wrote about the threat that lionfish pose to the Caribbean region.

One way to help manage the problem is for divers to go spearfishing and remove as many as possible. Some people found out that the lionfish is actually quite tasty to eat. So that is a great stimulus to involve local fishermen and fishmongers and not just the diving community. So nowadays many restaurants have lionfish on the menu. It is mostly served as a ceviche.

Basically, a ceviche is a raw fish salad, often served as an appetizer or a side dish. It is a bracing dish and it may be spicy as well, depending on the chef. All over the Caribbean and in South America (where it supposedly found its origin for conserving fresh fish), ceviche has different styles and ingredients. Many types of fish are suitable for a delicious ceviche, as long as they have a firm texture. The lionfish fits into this picture.

Apart from the fish, you need limes (or any citrus mixture) to marinade the fish cubes together with a tablespoon of vinegar. The lime has a similar effect as cooking the fish. After marinating, you can mix in a variety of other ingredients, but the basics are red onions and cilantro. After that it is up to you. If you like it spicy, you may add some habaneros. You can make it more fruity by adding mango or even avocado. You never fail with some diced tomatoes or cucumber either. A tad of orange juice can take away the sharp edge of the lime in the marinade. It is a great dish to experiment with and make it to your or your guest’s preference. Add sea salt and pepper and give it a few hours before serving so all the different flavours mix well together. 

It goes perfectly well with a glass of white wine. You can’t go wrong with a Sauvignon Blanc. Also a refreshing cocktail fits well next to your ceviche appetizer.

Finally, you can serve different styles of ceviche and experiment with different ingredients and marinating durations. You can eat the leftovers the next day (store in the fridge!) and it may even taste better as the flavors had more time to mix.

I am very interested to hear what recipes you come up with. Let me know what is your favorite combination. 

Bon appetit!

Ethan and David

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