The Many Versions of Ceviche

There are many variations of tacos, enchiladas, and tamales. The same is true of ceviche. The basic ingredients in every variation of ceviche are similar: fish, lime or lemon juice, vegetables, and fruits. However, specific ceviche recipes are unique to the region in the world where the dish is prepared and served. There is at least one ceviche variation for nearly every taste preference!

South American Ceviche

Ceviche is believed to have originated more than 2000 years ago in South America, in what is now known as Peru. Moorish women, who accompanied exploring Spaniards, shared a predecessor of the dish with the indigenous Moche people in the coastal region. The Moche originally used the juice from passion fruit to marinate the raw fish and seafood in their dishes. The Inca people also enjoyed a version of ceviche, fermented by chicha, a fermented beverage of the Andean region.

Today, South American ceviche is typically fermented with key lime or bitter orange juices, and served at room temperature with sides of corn on the cob or sweet potato. Sole and shark are among the most common varieties of fish included in South American ceviche. Modern-day Peru considers ceviche to be a national dish, and even has a holiday dedicated in its honor. In Peru, a side of the marinade is often served with ceviche as an appetizer, and called either leche de tigre or leche de pantera.

Ceviche in the Philippines

In the Philippines, kinilaw or kilawin is a type of preparation that uses coconut vinegar and other acidic juices as marinades. Unlike ceviche, which is typically limited to seafood, kinilaw and kilawin dishes feature both raw seafood and raw meat. The earliest variations were described by Spanish colonists and explorers during the 1600s.

Fish variations of kinilaw include tangue(Spanish mackerel), malasugi (swordfish or marlin), or anchovies along with souring agents, plus salt and black pepper, ginger, onions, and chili peppers. Other variations of the dish include shrimp, squid, oysters, clams, crabs, and sea urchin roe (eggs). Cooked meat and vegetables are also frequently included.

Mexican Ceviche

In Mexico and Central America, ceviche is frequently served in cocktail cups accompanied by salted crackers. It is also served as a tostada topping or as taco filling. A Ceviche cocktail served along with a cup of tomato sauce is a popular dish in the Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, and the southeast areas of Mexico. Besides fish like tuna and mackerel, Mexican ceviche often features shrimp, octopus, and squid. Salt, lime, onion, chili peppers, avocado, and cilantro (coriander leaves) are common marinade ingredients. Fresh tomatoes and olives are also frequently included in the dish.

210 Ceviche Variations

210 Ceviche features numerous ceviches, including 3 Amigos, featuring fish, shrimp and avocados cured in lime and orange marinade and served with red onion and cucumber; Toreado, featuring Ahi tuna cured in lemon and served with caramelized onions, jalapeño peppers, sesame seeds, and soy sauce; and the signature 210 Ceviche, featuring citrus-cured, fish, calamari, cooked octopus, and shrimp. Come and enjoy one of our delicious ceviches today!