You’ve probably ordered Mexican food at some point if you’re a big fan of trying out different dishes from different countries. If you haven’t, then you’ve heard of someone who likes to do so. Mexican food has grown in popularity across the world. This kind of food has a very long and also rich history, going centuries back. So many Mexican dishes originate from the Mayans and Aztecs. Today we are going to look in Camarones Aguachile, the origin of this dish, with an authentic recipe.
Authentic Mexican food is also known to be very healthy considering how rich it is in both minerals and vitamins. You will also enjoy it if you are keen on staying as far away as possible from high fat foods. This is because most Mexican foods contain low fat and are as such, highly recommended for people on a weight loss journey or people who just love to enjoy good food but staying healthy is a priority for them.
Needless to say, there are many types of Mexican foods. Among them is camarones aguachile. In this post, we discuss more about this Mexican delicacy, everything from its origin, curiosities, variations and a recipe so that you can try it at home some time.
Aguachile is one of Mexico’s most loved delicacies. When you first look at it, you will notice it resembles ceviche. However, there are a number of differences between these two dishes. Aguachile is typically a dish that’s made of shrimp submerged in liquid. It is then seasoned with some lime juice, chili peppers, cilantro, salt, some cucumber and onion slices.
Aguachile is also described as a raw seafood dish that was first made in the Western region of Mexico. Its exact origin is a place called Sinaloa. Sinaloa is highly famous for Matzalan, its beach town. It’s a beautiful resort town that has amazing sandy beaches that would attract anyone in love with the sea.
Its location is also very unique seeing that there, the coastline beautifully crosses from the Cortez Sea into the vast Pacific Ocean. As you can imagine, this is the biggest reason why seafood makes a big part of the foods generally prepared in that specific area. It is typically prepared in a Molcajete. Originally, aguachile sinaloa was made using boiled water and small round chili peppers called chiltepines whose origin is also Sinaloa.
While a lot of the different seafoods around the area are left to sit in citrus so that they cook well, aguachile is different in that it is served immediately it is assembled. In the fishing town of Sinaloa where the dish hails from, it’s interesting that contrary to what we know today, aguachile by meaning had nothing at all to do with seafood.
Many centuries before the Spanish conquest, the indigenous Sinaloans would transport their meat right from mountain tops which was their place of residence towards the pacific coast. It is on this pacific coast that civilized traders would be found. They traded the meat for some salt that was used in the preservation of their sun-dried meat.
The traders would return and prepare boiling water bowls with some chiltepin chili pepper as well as their jerky meat in the boiling water. It is this specific meal preparation technique that was called Aguachile. With time, the native Sinaloan dish spread further to the Northern part of Mexico.
It is thanks to this spread that it was reinvented. The recipe turned into a tasty sauce that is often used as a marinade for seafood, mostly raw fish and shrimp. Many point its evolution to the 70s although it isn’t really clear. They can’t quite tell when exactly it became what it is, but to a food lover, knowing that it’s probably around the 70s will do.
Today, the dish is available in different variations such as red aguachile and aguachile negro.
The main difference between aguachile negro and other variations is in the color. Its black, but there are other differences too. For example, you can use several different methods in preparing aguachile negro. You can use charred onions or recardo negro which is a spice mix. That said, most people use soy sauce and also Maggi in the preparation.
You can make your aguachile negro as picante as you want it. Doing so only needs you to add chiles into the sauce and follow by sprinkling some readily dried chiltepin chiles.
Camarones Aguachiles Recipe
- 1 pound extra large shrimp (well peeled and deveined)
- 1 red onion (thinly sliced)
- 1 medium cucumber (well peeled and thinly sliced)
- 1 cup fresh lime juice (approximately 8 limes)
- 4-6 serrano peppers( with removed stems)
- 4 tablespoons cilantro (chopped)
- Fresh cracked pepper
- 2 tablespoons grapeseed or olive oil
- 8 corn tortilla tostadas
- 1-2avocados (sliced)
- Grab the shrimp, peel it and then clean properly. Get a small knife, ensure it’s sharp enough and use it to butterfly the shrimp open. Slice the shrimp into two equal pieces. Doing this will help in laying the shrimp flat especially while marinating and cooking it. It will also ensure you’re working with smaller pieces that will subsequently be easy to eat, which is just what you need to enjoy this dish.
- Proceed to rinsing the shrimp in cold water then pat dry using some paper towels. Transfer the shrimp back to the shallow dish, preferably glass. Add ½ of the lime juice you have for the recipe to your shrimp and ensure the shrimp is well covered with it. Season the shrimp with some salt. This will add to its taste.
- Cover this and allow it to chill as you continue preparing the rest of your ingredients that are already set aside.
- Add the Serrano peppers into the blender then include ½ a cilantro, some grapeseed oil, salt toad flavor and the remaining lemon juice. Switch the blender to high and continue blending until it gets to your desired consistency. Once you have established that the salt is enough, pour the mixture over the other mixture that contains both lime and shrimp. Ensure you mix it evenly so that all the ingredients blend well together. Season this with freshly cracked pepper.
- Grab some cucumbers and onions and layer them on top. In it add the cilantro, cover it and let it chill for a while, about 15 minutes. Your shrimp will be ready after 5 minutes. However, you have the option of leaving it until you are ready to eat it.
- Mix it all together before you proceed to serving it. Use avocado slices to garnish it. You can also use the remaining cilantro for the same.
- Serve your dish alongside tostadas or you could also serve it with crackers. Enjoy!
Camarones Aguachile Calories and Nutrition
If you particularly love your health, which should be the case, then you will be interested in knowing what this dish will add to your body in terms of nutrition and calories. Well, from a single serving from the above recipe, you will get about 355 calories.
The total fat content in it amounts to 23grams so that’s what you will be working with in case you are ever keen on shedding off excess fat. Camarones aguachiles does contain some saturated fats although very minimal, standing at 5g but you will be happy to know that it has no transfats.
The dish also has sodium, carbohydrates, fiber, sugar and also protein. Your body needs all these in order to function properly. Remember, on its own, shrimp is rich in selenium and vitamin B12, niacin and zinc so this is a dish you should definitely be eating. It will give you antioxidants that help you fight inflammation.
Just a tip though, if you are not particularly sure about preparing seafood with lime juice, there is really no cause for alarm. You can always go about it a bit differently. Place your fresh shrimp inside some simmering salty water for about three minutes or at least until the shrimp changes to pink. After this, transfer the shrimp to an icebath before following the recipe above to prepare it.
Remember to also use seafood of the highest quality for best results. Read the packaging to ensure that you do not face any issues with the shrimp you get. Considering it is eaten raw, you do not want to have any health problems. You might have to pre-freeze it to keep it safe for consumption. Also, ensure it is well cleaned and that you follow all the steps required in preparation.
Camarones aguachile is a fantastic dish to add to your list of foods to try. It’s very easy to prepare it. The recipe above, for example, will only take 25 minutes to prepare. After the preparation, it will only take you 30 minutes to get it all cooked and ready to serve. It is definitely worth your time considering it serves about four people. It’s a dish you can definitely enjoy alongside a friend or two so why not try it.
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