If it’s cooked, does it still technically count as ceviche? If you’re using shrimp, then the answer is yes—it’s completely authentic and appropriate to parboil the shrimp before soaking in lime juice. Njchicaa was tipped off by a clerk at the grocery store to steam shrimp halfway before adding lime juice. “It is delicious!” Njchicaa says. The reason for cooking: By the time raw shrimp would fully cure in lime juice, they’d have an unpleasantly flaccid, rubbery texture, says ipsedixit. bulavinaka confirms that soaking shrimp in lime juice for hours is not advisable. “I ended up with ick,” says bulavinaka. “And don’t get fancy by mixing in pineapple or papaya. The enzymes will ick your seafood as well.”
Ecuadoran shrimp ceviche is generally cooked, says paulj, as are ceviches made from tougher seafood like octopus. For step-by-step instructions, this CHOW recipe for Ecuadoran Shrimp Cocktail (pictured) illustrates the technique.
Some Mexican shrimp ceviche is not cooked, says Jeanne, but that should only be attempted with just-pulled-out-of-the-water shrimp. This type of raw shrimp “cooked” in lime juice is known as camarones en aguachile in Sinaloa, Mexico, says chefj, while the parboiled kind is simply known as ceviche de camarón (shrimp ceviche).
Discuss: Shrimp ceviche cook or soak?
Photograph by Chris Rochelle / CHOW.com