Thursday, April 21, 2011

Aguachile de Camaron (Spicy Shrimp Ceviche)

So I'm not sure about everyone else, but for some reason I am always skeeved out by the idea of making raw or lightly cured seafood at home.  I've wanted to make ceviche for some time, but the thought of eating raw tilapia or other seafood at home threw me off.  But it never deterred me from ordering it in a restaurant.  And as Alex pointed out to me this evening, the likelihood that the suppliers for most hole in the wall ceviche restaurants provide higher quality seafood than I can find at Whole Foods is unlikely.  So I guess I was being silly.  

Depending on how spicy your serrano chilis are, you might want to reduce the amount of chilis in your dressing.  Alex used the full three, plus ours are pretty spicy, so the ceviche packed a serious punch.  According to the Google search I did, aguachile is essentially a very spicy ceviche with a lime and green chili dressing.  Sounds delicious, doesn't it?  Given that my mom was the one who gave me this recipe, I assume she intended for it to be pretty spicy.  I have no idea where she got the recipe from - I know that she has a Peruvian friend named Charo who brings over ceviche mixto from time to time, but I don't think the recipe came from Charo because it's not a traditional recipe.  Charo's ceviche is dressed simply with lime and full of red onions, and is accompanied by potatoes or yucca.  And it's never spicy.  Knowing my mom, she probably found this recipe in a magazine awhile ago and modified it a bit and then passed it on to me.  And then I modified it a little more.  All I know is that this ceviche was pretty freaking good.  It has a lot more fruit in it than most ceviches that I have tried, but I thought it was pretty delicious.  The adjectives that come to mind to describe the dish are spicy, sweet, bright and fresh.  I would definitely make it again!

Recipe after the jump!

Aguachile de Camaron (Spicy Shrimp Ceviche)

1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1 1/2 tsp salt
2-3 whole serrano chilis (we used 3 and the dressing had some serious kick)
1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 English cucumber, peeled and diced
1 medium mango, peeled and diced
1 large avocado, thinly sliced
2 tbsp cilantro, chopped
fresh tortilla chips

Combine lime juice, salt and chilies in a blender.  Process until smooth.  Place in large bowl.

Cut each shrimp in half lengthwise.  Add to marinade, along with onion, cucumber, and mango.  Mix well.  Refrigerate at least 30 minutes or overnight, stirring occasionally (we refrigerated it for about 2 hours).

To serve, arrange shrimp mixture on a platter.  Spoon on some of the lime-juice dressing.  Arrange avocado slices on the platter.  Garnish with cilantro and serve with tortilla chips.

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