by Mark Breen 12 March 2013
As always I am hungry for new experiences in food and to find out about new cuisines and different ways in which you can use flavour to make people’s senses explode as you serve them up a treat.
And last weekend I considered myself very lucky to be working with Hen Clancy and Stephanie Boote on The Last Days of Pisco Cevicheria at Feast London.
Hen is the founder of The Last Days of Pisco, which is usually a pop up restaurant that serves ceviche and pisco cocktails. Her partner in pisco – Stephanie is a great chef, and both of them were beautifully patient as they helped me understand the art of ceviche and answered my many questions about ceviche and pop ups. In return they got the most enthusiastic student they could hope for.
Ceviche’s birthplace is disputed between Peru and Ecuador, and as both countries have an amazing variety of fish and shellfish, it may well have come from the ancient Inca civilizations of Peru or Ecuador. The dish means fish or seafood cooked by marinating in citrus. However the origins of the dish we were preparing were certainly Peruvian, as Hen had honed her ceviche skills whilst in the country, where she fell in love the cuisine. After heading back to London she developed it with her own little flourishes, and today serves it to customers looking to eat the freshest fish with the fullest flavours.
There are recipes for ceviche all over the web and I’m not going to be the one to share the Last Days of Pisco’s secret recipe for sea bass ceviche. But just to get your creative juices flowing I will tell you the heat comes from peruvian aji amarillo chilli, the zing comes from marinating in lime juice and the sweetness comes from homemade candied orange peel – absolutely delicious.
I’m looking forward to working (and of course eating) with The Last Days of Pisco again soon, which might well be in Brixton as they are looking to do something there soon, having spent the recent past doing pop up restaurants around East London.
Find out more about The Last Days of Pisco – http://www.TLDOPisco.com/.