Freshly caught and special delivery to me from my fish monger down in Houston (thanks Billy) ..allow me to present to you one of my absolute favorite fishes of all time..the hog snapper!!To make ceviche the main ingredient needs to be the freshest fish possible..no fresh no good..generally a good rule of thumb.
Start by filleting the fish ,cut from the back and “over” the back bone. First one side …….then the other…
Now skin the filets by getting a firm grip on the tail and cut down to the skin ,have the blade of the knife horizontal with the skin and wiggle the skin against the blade of the knife.
Next cut the skinless filets in strips as seen in the picture …then across into dices…put the fish in a cold metal bowl….
Next you will need three lemons and one lime a zester and a fine mesh chinoise roll the two lemons on the table in the palm of your hand a few times back and forth then cut in half and squeeze the lemons and lime juice in to the chinoise.
Next you will need to zest the last lemon over the diced fish and then cut in half and squeeze the juice as done with the other lemons…. Now the foundation of any cuisine ….salt and pepper…needless to say fresh cracked black pepper is better than anything you buy at the store already ground….
Place the bowl in your fridge for about 40 -45 minutes ..not more than that or it will “over cook”…Now for the garnishes for this ceviche I use julienne carrot, julienne chayote,fine diced red onion, julienne cucumber and avocado for garnish…I use a mandolin for julienne the vegetable..end result is so good and exact and saves a lot of time …just watch your finger tips…I really like to use different vessels for serving my ceviche to give it a more authentic look and feel to it…so a table of four can order it and receive the same amount of ceviche in four different vessels..the coolness factor is sky high…me thinks!
Next assembly of the dish…start with cucumber then chayote then onion and then fish and repeat..slice avocado really thin and place on top with some cilantro as garnish and serve it as is ……..or with some chips and salsa …Simplicity and freshness archived with a few top notch ingredients and using them to highlight the beautiful elegant sweetness of the snapper …