Kathlyn of Bake Like a Ninja was our Daring Cooks’ March 2011 hostess. Kathlyn challenges us to make two classic Peruvian dishes: Ceviche de Pescado from “Peruvian Cooking – Basic Recipes” by Annik Franco Barreau. And Papas Rellenas adapted from a home recipe by Kathlyn’s Spanish teacher, Mayra.
Once again, I found this months Daring Cooks Challenge to be quite intimidating. Ceviche is fish or seafood that is “cooked” in lime or lemon juice. In a restaurant I wouldn’t hesitate to order it, but making it at home had me worried about food poisoning. I read up on the safety of making your own ceviche and found that the most important thing is to have fresh fish. If you don’t have a trusted fish monger, the secret is to buy fish or seafood that has been frozen at sea. Freezing at sea means the freshness is basically locked in.
I chose to use Argentinian scallops that were frozen at sea. At my local grocery store they come in packages that are vaccum sealed; if you use the same ones make sure the seal isn’t broken. If it is the scallops may be freezer burned. Argentinian scallops are quite small so I didn’t cut them into pieces.
Even though I used all the precautions I could when making the ceviche, I was still very nervous about eating. I took a bite. It tasted good. I took another, then another. I finished my plate, then waited. No food poisoning! This was a ceviche success!
I was also going to make the Papas Rellanas. Papas Rellanas are fried mashed potatoes with a ground beef filling. I was sure I had the ingredients on hand, but it turns out I was missing quite a few. Instead of making something that was very far from the original recipe, I chose to skip that part of he challenge.
- 2 lbs. scallops
- 2 garlic cloves, mashed
- 1 chili pepper, mince
- 1 cup (240 ml) freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice (between 8-12 limes)
- fresh coriander (I omitted this)
- 1 red onion, thinly sliced lengthwise
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
- Combine the lime juice, garlic, chili and coriander. Pour over the scallops, making sure all are covered.
- Put sliced onion on top. Let sit for 10 minutes as it “cooks”.
- Lift fish out of lime juice mixture and serve with sweet potato or corn.