Sea Urchin Ceviche

Sea Urchin Ceviche

It’s the middle of November here in New York, and we’re still having springtime weather. This warm-blooded California boy isn’t complaining, but it’s a little disconcerting, especially with predictions of the end of the world only a few years away. I was thinking I may have to hang onto this post until next summer, but if the Mayans were right, you might want to try this sooner rather than later.

For those that have never had it, uni, is the orange reproductive organs of the spiny sea urchin. I know, it doesn’t sound appealing at all, but it’s sweet, rich, and creamy, melting on your tongue into a briny pool of heaven. It’s so rich in fact, that I usually have a hard time eating more than a few pieces — far fewer than the dozen and a half or so pieces that come in one flat.

That’s why I came up with this preparation. The citrusy tang cuts through the richness of the sea urchin, while the crispy salad of veggies benefit from the creamy sweetness imparted by the golden swaths of uni.

Sea Urchin Ceviche

While many recipes call for seeding tomatoes, the little gelatinous sacs around the seeds is where most of the umami containing compounds in the tomato are, so by tossing the seeds, you’re also parting with a lot of flavour. Plus, I love the the slippery texture of the sacs that do a convincing impression of caviar.

Have fun with the veggies you use, in the photo above, I used clear seaweed noodles instead of sea beans, and I’ve even toyed with the idea of using unripe fruit. Whatever you do, make sure you use produce that can hold up to the acidic dressing without wilting or getting soggy. Sweet peppers, cucumbers, and sunchokes are all great additions and if green shiso is hard to find in your area, try going with other herbs like fresh basil or mint.

Sea Urchin Ceviche

1 flat of uni (sea urchin)
2 vine ripened tomatoes
1/4 small red onion cut into brunoise (1/8″ cubes)
1/4 small jicama cut into brunoise (1/8″ cubes)
1 serrano chile minced with seeds
2oz sea beans
6 green shiso leaves minced

1/4 C lime juice
1 Tbs olive oil
1 tsp kosher salt
black pepper

To prepare the tomatoes, quarter them and use your fingers to scape out the seeds into a bowl and set aside. Cut the tomatoes into a small dice (1/4″ cubes), and add them to a non-reactive bowl along with the red onion, jicama, chile, sea beans and shiso. Refrigerate ready to serve.

To serve just whisk the lime juice, olive oil, salt and pepper together and pour over the vegetables. Toss gently to coat then plate individual servings, topping with a generous helping of sea urchin and the reserved tomato seeds.

  • http://www.bitemekitchen.blogspot.com/ Rose

    SWOON! It’s 9 am here in California and I am now craving uni ceviche for breakfast ;) Nothing wrong with the reproductive organs of a spiny sea creature Hah! I can imagine the play between the oceany uni and the crisp citrus. Can’t wait to try this. Really nice work!

  • http://www.bitemekitchen.blogspot.com Rose

    SWOON! It’s 9 am here in California and I am now craving uni ceviche for breakfast ;) Nothing wrong with the reproductive organs of a spiny sea creature Hah! I can imagine the play between the oceany uni and the crisp citrus. Can’t wait to try this. Really nice work!

  • http://foodmayhem.com/ Jessica@FoodMayhem

    I love uni, but I didn’t know they were the reproductive organs. I’m surprised they haven’t been marketed as some natural fertility enhancing food. haha

  • http://foodmayhem.com Jessica@FoodMayhem

    I love uni, but I didn’t know they were the reproductive organs. I’m surprised they haven’t been marketed as some natural fertility enhancing food. haha

  • http://www.kalofagas.ca/ Peter

    Marc, if dining out with friends, I would order this just for myself. I’m all over the sea urchin!

  • http://www.kalofagas.ca Peter

    Marc, if dining out with friends, I would order this just for myself. I’m all over the sea urchin!

  • http://nancyvienneau.com/blog nancy at goodfoodmatters

    I am so glad to learn about the umami concentration around the tomato seeds. I never liked discarding them; it seemed wasteful…and apparently for more reasons than one!
    Great information, thanks Marc

  • http://nancyvienneau.com/blog nancy at goodfoodmatters

    I am so glad to learn about the umami concentration around the tomato seeds. I never liked discarding them; it seemed wasteful…and apparently for more reasons than one!
    Great information, thanks Marc

  • http://www.sippitysup.com/ SippitySup

    You don’t have to sell me on uni, and I too tend to prefer my tomatoes seeds and all. I just never knew why! Thanks for letting me know. It was also great meeting you in SF for FoodBuzz. It was a fun event and an honor spending time with you!! GREG

  • http://www.sippitysup.com SippitySup

    You don’t have to sell me on uni, and I too tend to prefer my tomatoes seeds and all. I just never knew why! Thanks for letting me know. It was also great meeting you in SF for FoodBuzz. It was a fun event and an honor spending time with you!! GREG

  • http://zencancook.com/ zenchef

    Is the end of the world really coming?
    I really have to start reading newspapers. :)
    That first picture is stunning. I can’t keep my eyes off it.
    Love the combination here. Sea urchin is one of my favorite things.

  • http://zencancook.com zenchef

    Is the end of the world really coming?
    I really have to start reading newspapers. :)
    That first picture is stunning. I can’t keep my eyes off it.
    Love the combination here. Sea urchin is one of my favorite things.

  • http://www.twitter.com/eatdrinklove amy

    OMG I love LOVE uni! I should plan on making this next time if/when I stop at H Mart!

  • http://www.twitter.com/eatdrinklove amy

    OMG I love LOVE uni! I should plan on making this next time if/when I stop at H Mart!

  • http://freshlocalandbest.blogspot.com/ Christine @ Fresh Local and Be

    I was thinking the same about the warmer weather recently, and have been making summer dishes too. I’ll have to try this one soon, it looks so refreshing!

  • http://freshlocalandbest.blogspot.com Christine @ Fresh Local and Best

    I was thinking the same about the warmer weather recently, and have been making summer dishes too. I’ll have to try this one soon, it looks so refreshing!

  • http://www.theediblelibrary.com/ Meaghan

    Wow, good idea. This sounds and looks delicious!

  • http://www.theediblelibrary.com Meaghan

    Wow, good idea. This sounds and looks delicious!

  • http://foodalogue.com/ Joan Nova

    This is a very clever interpretation of ceviche, playful and elegant at the same time. I’ve only tried sea urchin a couple of times and enjoyed the experience. Also I appreciate your analogy of tomato seeds and caviar.

  • http://foodalogue.com Joan Nova

    This is a very clever interpretation of ceviche, playful and elegant at the same time. I’ve only tried sea urchin a couple of times and enjoyed the experience. Also I appreciate your analogy of tomato seeds and caviar.

  • http://cheffresco.com/ Cheffresco

    How creative! Looks delicious & colorful too!

  • http://cheffresco.com Cheffresco

    How creative! Looks delicious & colorful too!

  • http://www.choebrothers.com/ alecho

    woah…! this is super creative!!! I love uni, but i’ve never seen it as ceviche! niiiice!

  • http://www.choebrothers.com alecho

    woah…! this is super creative!!! I love uni, but i’ve never seen it as ceviche! niiiice!

  • http://blog.lemonpi.net/ Y

    What a gorgeous dish! I love uni, usually with rice and a few squares of nori, and I’m set.

  • http://blog.lemonpi.net Y

    What a gorgeous dish! I love uni, usually with rice and a few squares of nori, and I’m set.

  • http://cookappeal.blogspot.com/ Chef E

    Oh how hubby and I would love this! Zen is right the pic is stunning!

  • http://cookappeal.blogspot.com/ Chef E

    Oh how hubby and I would love this! Zen is right the pic is stunning!

  • http://anediblesymphony.blogspot.com/ Muneeba

    Unctuous. That’s the word that popped into my head when I saw your salad. With its wicked WICKED dollops of sea urchin roe scattered all over. Unctuous.

  • http://anediblesymphony.blogspot.com Muneeba

    Unctuous. That’s the word that popped into my head when I saw your salad. With its wicked WICKED dollops of sea urchin roe scattered all over. Unctuous.

  • http://www.bouchonfor2.com/ Mel @ bouchonfor2.com

    I believe the first post I ever commented on here is your uni pasta. I. Heart. Uni. This looks amazing. Refreshing, vibrant, and indulgent. Great job, Marc.

  • http://www.bouchonfor2.com Mel @ bouchonfor2.com

    I believe the first post I ever commented on here is your uni pasta. I. Heart. Uni. This looks amazing. Refreshing, vibrant, and indulgent. Great job, Marc.

  • http://www.weareneverfull.com/ we are never full

    ahhhh uni… i love thee. let me count the ways. this looks clean and refreshing. and very healthy to boot (plus all those textures in one dish!) – awesome.

  • http://www.weareneverfull.com we are never full

    ahhhh uni… i love thee. let me count the ways. this looks clean and refreshing. and very healthy to boot (plus all those textures in one dish!) – awesome.

  • http://kitchensidecar.blogspot.com/ katiek

    i love fresh uni – right out of the shell. they shrink up when poeple add albumen and package them in flats. i love this refreshing toast to the sea.

  • http://kitchensidecar.blogspot.com katiek

    i love fresh uni – right out of the shell. they shrink up when poeple add albumen and package them in flats. i love this refreshing toast to the sea.

  • http://tastewiththeeyes.blogspot.com/ Lori Lynn

    This is absolutely genius Marc! I am a big fan of uni, it has such a sexy taste.
    Bravo on this one!
    LL

  • http://tastewiththeeyes.blogspot.com/ Lori Lynn

    This is absolutely genius Marc! I am a big fan of uni, it has such a sexy taste.
    Bravo on this one!
    LL

  • Psycho

    No can do, got an 8.30 “res” at Dorsia – great sea urchin ceviche!

  • Kon_artis_420

    I once had reservations at Dorsia and ordered this.  Simple to die for!

  • B haze

    Not very good, you want a good ceviche recipe let me know.

  • Alfok

    I got a res in Dorsia and I wanna taste it for today

  • itconflict

    How does one get a res at Dorsia? I hear they have great sea urchin civiche.

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  • Irene taste

    here in the Philippines you can have a bucket of fresh Uni or “Suwaki”( in our dialect) for only 2-3 dollars…We gather up around the shore to eat it with rice. We lived an island so the setting and the Uni i must say is heavenly!

    I am happy to know about this recipe, i will try this at home coz its deliciously BRILLIANT!!!

    • http://norecipes.com Marc Matsumoto

      Wow that must be nice! It costs about $20 a for a small flat here.

  • Pingback: Where and when to buy Sea Urchin (uni)? - Vancouver's Top Classifieds and Automotive Forum - REVscene.net

  • Krazy

    Paul Allen said it was a great dish.

  • arrow2010

    I’m here because of American Psycho.

Welcome!

I'm Marc, and I want to teach you some basic techniques and give you the confidence and inspiration so that you can cook without recipes too!