Rick Bayless’ Green Herb Ceviche
Sunday, 16 May 2010
I get a lot of my recipe ideas from the NY Times’ dining section. This week they were focusing on White House chefs, which I found particularly interesting because of Michelle Obama’s commitment to children’s nutrition and gardening. There was a recipe from the Obama’s favorite chef in Chicago, Rick Bayless, that caught my eye – Green Herb Ceviche With Cucumber. Apparently Mr. Bayless was a guest chef preparing this for a state dinner last week.
I’ve been looking for a good ceviche recipe, because it is a really healthy way to prepare raw fish. Yes, that’s right, the fish is not cooked. It is marinated in an acidic mixture of herbs (cilantro, parsley), spicy peppers, and lime juice that actually cures the fish without heating it (so it is safe to eat). This preserves more of the nutrients, especially the omega-3 fatty acids, which are usually diminished by heat. Of course, it is very important to get fresh, sushi-quality fish. I picked mine up at the farmers’ market this morning, where it had been freshly caught within the past day or so. You can get fresh (or freshly frozen) fish even if you don’t live near the coast, you just have to ask for sushi-grade fish. I used black cod (“butter fish”), which I love for it’s rich, meaty white flesh. It worked very well in the recipe.
Here is the link to the NY Times page:
The timing of this recipe was perfect, since I just picked up some of the season’s first cucumber harvest at the farmers’ market this weekend, and the young cucumbers are very sweet. I also threw in some sliced red spring onion, which was not in the recipe, and it was delicious. My avocado, however, was not ripe enough, so I left that out – but I’m sure it would have made a lovely addition. The preparation time was about a half hour, and the instructions are to let it refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour, but I left it in the fridge for a couple hours while I ran errands and it was perfect. It was very nicely complemented with the season’s first pick of sweet corn! And now I have some extra herb paste to use for another meal, perhaps a nice pasta dish tomorrow…