One VERY good thing about living back on a coast is the access to incredible seafood. I'm pretty lucky to live in a town with an actual seafood market with real live fishmongers. It's so old-fashioned and wonderful a notion to be able to walk in and ask what's looking good. The rush of ice-cold air when I open the door, walking on the worn wooden floors, the cases so carefully, artfully lined full of gleaming things from the sea...I can almost forget about those mountains for a minute. Almost.
Needless to say, it would be best if you can get your hands on some day boat scallops. If you can't, ask for the very best, freshest dry scallops available. When you see scallops sitting in a liquid, they are basically resting in a bath of preservatives. Generally, not what you'd want to eat and certainly not what you'd want to use for ceviche. Also, plan on buying your scallops the same day you plan on making this or any ceviche for that matter.
This is, obviously, a wonderful, cooling summer dish. It is a fresh and straightforward as you can get. You literally taste every single component you put in so take care to use the best possible ingredients. It's a fabulous dish now, of course, but one to return to as well, say in January in the middle of citrus season.
I serve this as an appetizer with grilled bread.
day boat scallop + citrus ceviche
adapted from the great ceviche book by Douglas Rodrigues
3/4 lb day boat scallops
juice of 3 limes
1 small red grapefruit, segmented
juice of 1 small red grapefruit
juice of 1 small orange
juice of 3 small lemons
1/2 cucumber, cut lengthwise, seeds removed and sliced into thin half-moons
2 scallions, sliced thin
1-2 T chopped chives
1 T micro-cilantro or finely chopped regular
1 avocado, cubed
2 t sea salt (I used falksalt citron) or more to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
Arrange the scallops on a small baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for an hour. You want the scallops firm but not frozen, as the purpose is to make them easy for you to slice.
Slice the scallops crosswise into rounds as thin as you can. Place them in a glass or stainless bowl (nonreactive) with the lime juice and salt.
Cover and refrigerate for an hour. Please don't go beyond this time because you'll end up over- "cooking" the scallops.
Roughly chop the grapefruit sections and combine with remaining ingredients in a nonreactive bowl. Drain the scallops and fold them into the mixture. Adjust for salt and pepper. Serve immediately.