I’ve mentioned before that I ate boatloads of ceviche in Central America this past summer. I made a ceviche recipe by Rick Bayless once before, and while you generally cannot go wrong with a Rick Bayless recipe, I actually prefer the more simplistic version I ate all summer. In most places, it is served with crackers – either saltines or a Ritz-style kind, but I generally prefer it with tortilla chips.

Central American-Style Ceviche

1 pound any type of white fish – I used tilapia
1 heirloom tomato, diced
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 jalapeno, de-seeded and finely minced
1/2 onion, finely diced
juice of 5-6 limes, possibly more
salt & pepper

Cut the fish into ~1-inch cubes submerge in lime juice in a stainless steel or glass bowl. If you don’t get enough juice from 5-6 limes, be sure to add more – every single piece of fish needs to be covered. Let sit for 2-4 hours. It’s done when you see the fish turn opaque. If you leave it much longer than 4 hours, though, the fish can become too tart.

Drain the juice thoroughly and mix in the other ingredients. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Food Party & Red Snapper Ceviche

It’s been a while since my friend Evan moved to Chicago – going on five months now – but believe it or not, he only recently bought a couch. In Evan’s mind, there is  no better way to celebrate buying a couch than to have a food-centric housewarming party (ok, so I may have had something to do with the party idea, but if you know Evan, you know the food-centric theme was all him).

Anyway, every invitee brought a recipe they had never, ever made before. Something they have never attempted. Something they never even thought about making. This set us up for potential disaster, to be sure, but surprisingly we all got out unharmed (unless you count being full past the point of comprehension). The food, in fact, was fabulous. I made a red snapper ceviche from Rick Bayless’s One Plate at a Time, which I’ll share below, but first is a little photo essay from the night.


Cheese to kick start the evening


Evan’s on-fire, very strong rye drink


Evan rinsing brown basmati rice


Danielle mincing garlic with this nifty garlic grinder


Danielle wrapping egg rolls


Evan not deveining the shrimp


Lots of butter in this recipe




More butter


Shrimp in curry spices


Dessert… cherries jubilee


Barely fit this in my belly

Red Snapper Ceviche

from Rick Bayless’s One Plate at a Time

~1 pound red snapper, or fillets from 1 large meaty white fish
1 1/2 cups fresh lime juice, or enough to completely cover all the fish
1 small white onion, chopped
2 large jalapeños, stemmed and chopped
1/4 cup pitted green manzanillo olives
2 large  ripe tomatos, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1/4 small jícama, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
juice of 1 orange

In a large stainless steel or glass bowl (plastic or other metals will react with the acid and add a yucky flavor to your fish), combine the fish, lime juice, and onion.  The fish should float freely in the juice; if not, add a little more.  Cover and refrigerate until the fish is cooked – I left mine in for 4 hours, but wish I had taken it out after 2-3 as I found it to be a bit too acidic. Strain out the lime juice and set the fish aside.

Combine the green chiles, olives, tomato, jícama, cilantro, and olive oil. Stir in the fish, with salt and orange juice.  Refrigerate until ready to serve — preferably no longer than an hour or two. Serve with tortilla chips