My friend Ilene served me some seviche for supper one night, and it just hit the spot. We had it with salad and grilled bread dunked in some fancy special olive oil. It was really tasty, and had been made, according to a recipe in the big yellow Gourmet Cookbook, but with fresh fish filets, instead of the usual (to me) shellfish. Flavorful and satisfying, but not heavy, it was just exactly the amount of supper I wanted then, and often like to have.
Since then, I've been making some off the cuff non-traditional versions, using what ever bits of fish and shell fish happen to be around and need to be used up right away. In order to make a traditional seviche, where the fish is raw, and is cooked only by the acidity of the citrus in which it marinates, you've got to use absolutely fresh, first quality fish and shellfish, from a trusted supplier, to be confident that you won't poison yourself.
I've taken a hint from the Gourmet recipe, and flash cook the fish I use-a minute in boiling water cooks a filet, shrimp, or scallops through-and then hit it with cold water and dry it off before marinating. This allows me to use frozen shrimps and scallops, and fish I bought yesterday that still smells nice. I've been doing this fairly often, and it's pretty good-though I'm sure it doesn't compare to the real thing.
For a marinade, I generally use lime juice, cilantro, a bit of fresh hot pepper, chopped red onion, chopped sweet peppers, smoked spanish paprika, and salt and pepper. Since I get home from work pretty early (a little after 3 o'clock), I can put this in the fridge, and it will be all nice and marinated by supper. Good for eating on the porch on a hot Indian-summer day. All you need is a bowl, fork, and glass of something-and maybe a piece of bread, and a book.