The most tasteful things in life are usually the simplest. And this dish is a shining example.
After weeks of nipping at our ankles like border collies herding sheep, Christmas Eve is here and New Years Eve will be scurrying right up behind it. I for one am ready to welcome in a new year of hope and gratitude with clinks of champagne and air kisses galore.
These occasions scream for something decadent, but with the flurry of social activities, travel time and overall high expectations, why don’t we all decide to keep it simple, shall we? Simply decadent.
This year I’ll be celebrating New Years on a beach in Mexico. No, not just in my mind as I settle into below freezing temperatures as my husband suggests I warm up that snow shovel. No, this is all real life baby. Sand, surf and shrimp will be tops on my itinerary, and not necessarily in that order.
Some of my favorite memories of Mexico all have to do with eating shrimp. Fried shrimp tacos were just a skip across the San Diego border to our rented house outside Rosarita and our daily stops at the taco stand across the street. And savoring the most amazing, velvety Mexican pink shrimp omelets from the tiny coastal town of San Felipe, caught fresh that morning. And ceviche! Oh the ceviche in Cabo at a little shack just off the marina’s water where you could take your own fresh catch and they’d parlay it into the little chunks of limey heaven.
For New Years Eve this year I’m pretty sure we’ll be partaking of the simple crustacean in mega doses. Easy to make and delicious to eat, this dish embodies Mexican flavors at their simplest.
I’ve paired the shrimp with sea scallops to give a creamy balance to the firmer texture of the shrimp in this classic Mexican appetizer. Then it’s just down to loading the mix into buttery Avocados from Mexico.
Of course I had to add my own spin so I also studded the blend with a few sweet bursts of pomegranate seeds. Pomegranates are usually grown in Mexico from late August through October, but I’m betting I’ll be able to find some from a resourceful grocer once I’m there. Not only do these guys add a festive flair, but they’re elegant enough to serve as a first course taste on grandma’s fine china for Christmas Eve yet not too fussy to break out at a sunset beach picnic.
Now I just need to decide whether I’ll be ringing in the new year with a glass of champagne or a shot of tequila.
I think I just did. Pass the limes please.
Shrimp and Scallop Ceviche Stuffed Avocado
- ½ pound large shrimp shelled, cleaned and tails removed
- ½ pound sea scallops
- ½ jalapeno or serrano chile diced, plus 8 thin slices
- 1 shallot diced or thinly sliced
- 4 limes juiced
- kosher salt
- ¼ cup cilantro chopped plus extra leaves for garnish
- ¼ cup pomegranate seeds
- 4 Avocados from Mexico halved and pits removed
- Chop shrimp and scallops into large, diced pieces and add to a large bowl Add jalapeno, shallots and lime juice and stir well to coat. Season with kosher salt and cover and refrigerate for 1 hour for flavors to meld.
- Add cilantro and pomegranate seeds and mix. Prepare avocado halves and divide ceviche evenly among them. Garnish with cilantro leaves and sliced jalapeno or serrano peppers.
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