Travelling around Peru I made it my mission to sample as many ceviche dishes as possible. I don’t think I was disappointed once. Some were very fiery, some oniony but they all sang with flavour. The first and most important element is the fish, natch. It must be the freshest possible so try and buy it from a good fishmonger. Halibut is expensive but you could probably stretch this to serve 6 people, especially if it was part of a three course meal. The other thing to note is not to ‘overcook’ the fish: by which I mean that the fish should not sit for too long in the lime juice which ‘cooks’ the flesh. You could serve the ceviche with bread or a bowl of tortilla chips.
- ½ red onion, peeled and finely chopped
- Maldon salt
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 190g cherry tomatoes, red and yellow
- 1 green chilli, deseeded and very finely chopped
- Juice of 3 limes
- 15g peeled root ginger, sliced
- 500g skinned halibut fillets
- 2 avocadoes, halved and stoned
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped coriander
- Extra-virgin olive oil for drizzling
- Put the onion in a bowl and add a pinch of salt. Pour the vinegar over and leave for 1 hour. This gets rid of the overpowering raw onion flavour. Drain and place in a mixing bowl.
- Make a little incision in the base of each tomato and place in a bowl. Pour over enough boiling water to cover the tomatoes and leave for one minute. Drain and refresh under cold water. Peel off the tomato skins and quarter them. Add them to the onion along with the green chilli.
- Put the lime juice in a small bowl and add the ginger slices. Leave for 30 minutes then lift out the ginger and discard. All these three stages can be done in advance.
- Just before you want to eat cut the halibut into small 1 cm cubes. Place in a bowl and sprinkle with a couple of good pinches of Maldon salt. Leave for 5 minutes. Pour the lime juice over the halibut and stir in the onion mixture. Carefully fold in the avocado and coriander. Season with ground black pepper.
- To serve, place 4 (or 6) ring moulds on dinner plates and pile the ceviche into the centre. Lift off the ring moulds and drizzle with a little olive oil. Serve immediately with bread or tortilla chips.