To create a flavorful yet balanced “cooking” liquid for our Peruvian fish ceviche, we made what's known as a leche de tigre by blending lime juice, aji amarillo chile paste, garlic, extra-virgin olive oil, and a small amount of fish. Once strained, the liquid was an intensely flavorful and silky-textured emulsion. We then soaked thinly sliced and briefly salted fish (red snapper, sea bass, halibut, and grouper were all good options) in the leche for 30 to 40 minutes until it was just opaque and slightly firm. To complete the dish, we added sweet oranges; crisp, peppery radishes; and chopped cilantro. We served the ceviche with corn nuts and popcorn, which provided salty crunch.
Ask the fishmonger to cut the grouper into 1-inch cubes for you and remove the shells and veins from the shrimp. You’ll want to purchase clams that are the same size so that they cook evenly. Adding the clams to the stock while it comes to a boil helps speed up the process.
Moules frites are easily one of my favorite things to order at a seafood restaurant. If you eat a dish like this outdoors in the summertime, ideally with your feet in the sand or resting gently on the grass, you will remember it forever. Don’t be afraid to work with mussels—they take a little while to clean, but they cook in minutes and are very inexpensive.
Lots of Southern shrimp and grits recipes call for the addition of bacon, but we like the aromatic smell and taste of Louisiana Tasso, a Creole ham that you’ll find as the foundation (along with the Holy Trinity of sautéed onions, peppers, and celery) of any respectable gumbo or jambalaya. This recipe is actually a riff on redeye gravy, an old Southern gravy using coffee and country ham. We serve these to thousands of guests each Derby at Churchill Downs.
Fresh salmon is cut into bite-sized chunks and skewered with alternating slices of fresh lemon. They are given a quick grill and then finished with a fresh basil vinaigrette.
Clams, mussels, and oysters belong to the group of shellfish known as bivalves, and they can all be grilled in the same fashion. These two-shelled creatures are easy to cook; when they open, they are done. One of the biggest challenges when cooking bivalves is making sure they are clean. Even perfectly cooked clams and mussels can be made inedible by lingering sand. Over the course of developing our recipe, we learned that careful shopping plays the most important role in minimizing your kitchen work and ensuring that your shellfish are free of grit. While steaming is the easiest way to cook clams and mussels (oysters are often eaten raw on the half shell), grilling these bivalves is an appealing option, especially for summer entertaining. It's also an incredibly simple preparation. The key to great bivalves on the grill is not to move the shellfish around too much, and to handle them carefully once they open. You want to preserve the natural juices, so when they open, transfer them with tongs to a platter, holding them steady so as not to spill any of the liquid. Add an easy sauce or flavored butter to complement the natural brininess of the shellfish.
This dish is ubiquitous in Spain. I ordered it at almost every dive and tapas bar I came across and found it to be universally fantastic. The quantities of oil and booze may seem extravagant, but as this dish vigorously boils into a tasty union, the rich and deliciously flavored sauce becomes as desirable as the shrimp themselves.
I always feel like I’m the last one to pick up my kids from school, probably because I always think that I have more time than I actually do or that I can get from A to B faster than I really can. Copenhagen’s Torvehallerne Market is practically next door to the school, and I stop in just about every day before picking them up. Of course, once I’m there I have to get a coffee, and then I bump into a friend and stop to chat for what seems like only a minute, and all of a sudden time has gotten away from me and I know I’ll only have a half-hour to cook dinner when we get home. Fortunately, this baked fish takes even less time than that. It’s a go-to for busy weeknights.
Paired with some crusty bread and a simple salad, mussels make a lovely light meal. But getting them perfectly cooked can be tricky, with most stovetop recipes inevitably turning out some overcooked and some undercooked mussels. We made cooking mussels absolutely foolproof by using our multicooker, which evenly surrounded the mussels with steam and resulted in a pot full of tender, plump mussels every time. On the pressure setting, we needed to cook the mussels for just 1 minute; on the slow cook setting (which heats up much faster than a traditional slow cooker) the mussels were cooked perfectly within half an hour. To infuse the mussels with lots of flavor, we sautéed garlic, thyme, and red pepper flakes in butter, and used wine as the cooking liquid. We finished the mussels with a sprinkle of fresh parsley. You can substitute 3 pounds of littleneck clams for the mussels; increase the pressure cooking time to 2 minutes. Discard any raw mussels with an unpleasant odor or with a cracked or broken shell or a shell that won’t close. Serve with crusty bread.
A favorite from Alexis Alvarez Armas, this dish is inspired by Cuba's Chinese- Criollo cuisine. After cooking delicate trout fillets in a bamboo steamer, Alexis dresses them with a Chino- Latino blend of soy sauce, fermented black beans, olive oil, and lots of scallions and chives. It's a dish we could eat every day.