Having just spent two amazing weeks in Peru, my husband and I feasted on their national dish, ceviche, multiple times. It’s Peru’s answer to sushi and is quite easy to whip up. Lightly marinating fish in lime juice and salt kills any harmful bacteria…who knew?! Plus it provides a refreshing, light citrus taste. We ate it as a main course, served with boiled sweet potato and corn. It also makes a great appie.

This is the recipe closest to what we made in our cooking class in Arequipa, and it comes with great reviews. This is absolutely Reboot-friendly – just choose a different side dish with some healthy fats.  

  • 2 lbs tilapia fillets (or 2 lbs other firm white fish fillets*) (cubed)
  • 4 garlic cloves (or more, to taste) (chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons fresh cilantro (chopped)
  • 1 habanero pepper (seeded and chopped (or real Peruvian Aji Amarillo, if you can find it))
  • 10 limes (or more) (freshly squeezed and strained to remove pulp, enough to cover fish)
  • 1 red onion (thinly sliced and rinsed)
  1. Combine all ingredients except red onion and mix well.

    Place red onion on top and let it marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2-3 hours before serving.

    Before serving, mix well and serve with lettuce, corn, avocado or other cold salad vegetables on the side.

It is important to use non-fatty fish. So salmon does not work in this recipe. Bay scallops, halibut, or cod would work.

It is important to use a juicer that presses the juice out of the limes, not one that will tear the membrane of the lime sections since this will make the lime juice bitter.

The traditional ceviche recipe includes adding some fish broth to the marinade AFTER the fish is ready, though this particular recipe (adapted from Genius Kitchen) does not utilize fish broth. The marinade is known as leche de tigre, or tigers milk, in Peru. Before serving, pour some of the juice in a shot glass to go with the ceviche. Voila! True Peruvian delicacy in your own home! 

The image is what the final dish looked like in our Peruvian cooking class. Once the fish was ready, we combined it with 3 different sauces of varying heat, hence the 3 separate piles on the plate. The cup contains the original fish in its marinade, or tigers milk. 

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