Crudos are served in restaurants everywhere — why not at home, too? Appetizer or entrée, it's the perfect summer dish. All you need is fresh fish, olive oil, different accents and seasonings, and a sharp knife.
If you read my recipes, you'll notice that I'm a heat-freak, a pepperhead — well, these recipes are no different. A few different minced peppers as accents — jalapeño, Fresno, serrano — these can make all the difference. In January, I scored some paiche (a giant Amazonian freshwater fish that has not been regularly available in the U.S., if at all) at New York's Chelsea Market. The texture has been described as somewhere between cod and Chilean sea bass. It worked as a crudo with a little olive oil, lemon, and salt — though the texture trended more toward Chilean sea bass. Even then, I had to add some heat though.
It was an outrageous combination of not-easy-to-pair ingredients: paiche and bhut jolokia (second-hottest pepper in the world at the time). Hot? A little (wink). Tasty? Yes. Ridiculous? You bet. These recipes aren't as spicy. But they are simple and delicious. Use different citrus juices, salts, and kinds of salts as you taste and match accents to see what you like.
For each of these four quick recipes the process is the same. Slice your scallop or fish as thin as you like (if it's too thick, you're obviously not going to enjoy this because you're going to have to chew — not good). A drizzle of olive oil on the plate, place the scallop or fish on top. Drizzle a little oil on top (too much will mean the oil's bitterness will overwhelm the flavor of the seafood) and a drizzle of citrus juice to taste. Sprinkle the minced pepper on top if you're using it, some salt flakes, some pepper. Eat.