Peruvian salmon ceviche recipe

Peruvian salmon ceviche recipe

Ceviche is a Peruvian dish made from fresh raw fish marinated in citrus juices, usually lime and spiced with herbs like chilli peppers.

Ceviche is an old tradition in South America used by the Incas to preserve their fish with fruit juices, salt and chili peppers.  The Spanish conquerors later introduced the lime, which is now more commonly used.

The fish will essentially be “cooked” by the lime juice. The citric acids in the juice alters the fish’s protein structures, just as if it had been cooked with heat.  However, the acid does not kill bacteria and parasites as thoroughly as heat.  Therefore, it is important to use the freshest and cleanest fish possible.  The longer it is left to marinade, the longer it will cook.

There are a large number of varieties of ceviche in Peru and the fish commonly used is sea bass (corvina) but for this recipe we use salmon which is easy to find fresh in supermarkets back home.

Ingredients for salmon ceviche:

  • 600g of skinned salmon fillet
  • x4 fresh limes
  • x2 red chillies, seeded and finely chopped
  • bunch of fresh coriander, chopped
  • a quarter teaspoon of ground cumin
  • x2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • a few fingers worth of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • salt and pepper to season

Preparation for salmon ceviche:

1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl.  Ensure the salmon is cut into small bite sized pieces.

2. Cover bowl and put in the fridge for a few hours to marinade.

Salmon ceviche makes a delicious side or lunch main, guaranteed to always impress.  It is traditionally eaten around South America at lunch time, using the fresh fish caught from the morning’s catch.  A good ceviche restaurant (cevicherias) will close after lunch as the fish caught in the morning is no longer fresh by afternoon.

This salmon ceviche goes down very well with a traditional Peruvian Cusqueña beer:

Cusqueña beer

Cusqueña beer


  1. Ian

    Great article on an amazing dish!

    The first time I was in Peru, I just did not get the idea of eating fish cooked in lemon juice; of course chatting with a few locals and understanding the principle of denaturation (citric acid changes the proteins in the fish, unraveling the molecules and altering their chemical and physical properties) – Anyway I digress…

    Travelling in Peru led me to Huanchaco where I took the plunge and ordered a plate of ceviche…Guess what I never looked back, I was blown away by how superb a dish it is!

    • Stefan Arestis

      Thanks Ian


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