Chef Rick Bayless, Topolombampo & Frontera Grill, Chicago
, IL.
Salmon Ceviche with Orange, Capers and Roasted Green Chile

Adapted from Mexico One Plate at a Time, by Rick Bayless.

Yield: 4 cups, 8 appetizer servings

1 pound very fresh skinless salmon fillets (you'll need about 1 ¼ pounds if the salmon has the skin-trim off the skin before proceeding), cut into ½-inch cubes or slightly smaller
About 2/3 cup fresh lime juice
About 2/3 cup fresh orange juice
1 medium red onion, chopped into ¼-inch pieces
1 large fresh poblano chile
2 large seedless oranges
2 Tablespoons drained capers
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus some leaves for garnish Salt
2 generous cups frisée lettuce (what you'll get from 1 small head) Thin slices toasted French bread or special crackers for serving

To marinate the salmon, place the salmon in a 1 1/2 -quart glass or stainless steel bowl and stir in the lime and orange juices and onion. You'll need enough juice to cover the fish and allow it to float somewhat freely. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours, until a piece of salmon looks "cooked" about halfway through-it'll still be a translucent pink inside. Drain off all but a little of the juice.

For the flavorings, roast the poblano over an open flame or on a baking sheet 3 inches below a very hot broiler, turning regularly until the skin is evenly blistered and blackened, about 5 minutes for an open flame, 10 minutes for the broiler. Cover with a kitchen towel and let stand for 5 minutes. Rub off the blackened skin, then pull or cut out the stem and the seed pod. Tear open and quickly rinse to remove any stray seeds and bits of skin. Cut into 1/4-inch pieces and place in a large bowl.

Cut the stem and blossom ends (tops and bottoms) off both oranges. Then, standing each orange on your cutting board and working close to the flesh, cut away the rind and all the white pith. With a small sharp knife, cut between the segment-dividing white membranes, releasing perfect little segments (called suprêmes). Cut the segments in half and add to the bowl.

Stir in the capers, cilantro and marinated salmon (with the remaining juice). Taste and season with salt, usually about 1/2 teaspoon, then cover and refrigerate if not serving immediately.

To serve the ceviche, divide the frisée among eight martini glasses or small decorative bowls. Spoon the ceviche into the center of the lettuce, lay on a leaf or two of cilantro and you're ready to share this wonderful dish with your guests. Serve with toasts or crackers.

Note: This ceviche is best made the day it is served. After marinating the fish, the flavorings can be successfully added 4 or 5 hours ahead, but spoon the ceviche onto the lettuce when the quests are seated.