Raw Fish Noob to Make Ceviche. Hopes Not to Kill Guests
Having recently ditched 10 years of strict vegetarianism to sample the wonders of sea, I'm completely inexperienced in the realm of cooking/preparing fish. I have developed, however, a serious ceviche obsession, and the recipe in my Dona Thomas cook book is calling my name.
I'm planning on talking to the fish monger at length to make sure I get appropriate fish. The thing that worries me most is the cutting/de-boning. The recipe calls for 1/8" slices (so as to provide maximum surface area for the lime to do its thing) cut "on-bias." Google refuses to help me figure out what that means....
Any tips? Am I insane to try this? Thanks.
Cutting on the bias is to cut at about a 45 degree angle. Like when cutting a flank steak.(vegetarianism aside) here is an example:(scroll down)http://www.cooksillustrated.com/image...
I would say that the bias cut isn't as critical as making sure your pieces are of uniform size. You don't want smaller pieces to get rubbery. Oh, & don't forget the aguacate!
If you're going to a fishmonger, tell them you're making ceviche & ask them to debone for you. here's a link to 64 recipes:
If you get a nice, fresh, meaty fillet (boneless) - firm texture - you should be able to slice as directed with a very sharp knife; you usually slice across the short side of the fillet. Picture how you see sushi chefs cutting - that nice smooth stroke .
If making ceviche, make sure to get seafood that you would eat raw. Although the citrus "cooks" the fish, it doesn't kill the parasites.
Your hope is admirable...at least until you're sure you're in their wills. (JOKE, people!)
Make sure the fishmonger understands you're making ceviche when as you pick his/her brain. If you're really concerned about parasites, freeze your fish at 0F or below for a day or two and it'll kill 'em. You may still end up eating them, but they'll be dead.
FDA regulates that fish that is going to be eaten raw ie. sushi needs to be previously frozen. Most shrimp and scallops will have been previously frozen. I buy a sushi grade tuna from my local Asian store and it's frozen. Taste much cleaner than any tuna I've bought from my grocery store or even Fresh Market. Cut thin and in small pieces so you can get a lot of surface area for the lime juice to act on. Some people like to not have the fish marinate too long so they still get some fresh fish flavor. Others like it to sit for several hours so they get more of the citrus flavors.