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Summer Cooking With Kids: Learning About Food Safety and a Recipe for Red Snapper & Squash Ceviche

Summer Cooking With Kids: Learning About Food Safety and a Recipe for Red Snapper & Squash Ceviche

There are few foods that scream summer more than watermelon, gazpacho, and grilled everything. One food to add to that list? Ceviche.

Originating in South America, ceviche is made with raw fish or seafood often combined with bright citrus flavors, herbs, and veggies like cucumbers. The acid in the citrus marinade “cooks” the fish by breaking down the protein—no heat involved. The refreshing dish is served cool.

Since ceviche involves working with raw fish and seafood, it’s a good way to introduce your kids to food safety, especially older kids. We know. While food safety isn’t the most glitzy or glamorous part of cooking, proper food handling protects you and your family from foodborne illnesses and keeps you healthy.

Here’s some ways to sneak it into your adventures in cooking with kids:

  • Play food safety inspector: Food safety begins at the grocery store. Have you child play the role of food safety inspector. They can inspect produce and fruit for bruises and broken skin, which can be a gateway for bacteria. Your food safety inspector can also check expiration dates and keep track of the shopping order, ensuring that you pick up refrigerated items like dairy, fish, and eggs last and that you keep them separate from other grocery items in your cart.

  • Store properly: Most kids love helping to unpack bags of groceries, but instead of just shoving items willy-nilly into the refrigerator, it’s an opportunity to teach your kids about proper food storage. Keep meat, poultry, and fish in their own bag and store on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator. That way, any drips won’t contaminate other food. Cook within one to two days.

  • Separate, separate, separate: When you’re cooking, keep raw meat, poultry, and fish and their juices away from other ingredients, especially those that will be eaten raw. Designate separate cutting boards, utensils, and plates for raw meats and throw away any leftover marinades.

  • Wash your hands: When in doubt, wash your hands, especially before and after handling raw meat, poultry, and fish. If possible, use paper towels to dry your hands since dish towels and transfer germs.

Ready for your kids to test out their food safety skills? Try this recipe for red snapper and squash ceviche.

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Red Snapper & Squash Ceviche

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Serves 4 to 6

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 large yellow squash, cut into planks lengthwise

  • ¼ cup olive oil, divided

  • 1 pound wild red snapper, skin removed, chopped

  • ¼ cup lemon juice

  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted, chopped

  • 1 fresno chili, seeds, stems and ribs removed, minced & sliced into rings, for garnish

  • ½ cup Bowery Basil leaves, torn and tips reserved, for garnish

  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

  • Belgium endive, for serving

  • Corn chips, for serving

RECIPE PREPARATION

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1. Prepare a grill for medium heat, and oil the grate.

2. In a large bowl, toss the squash with 2 tablespoons oil and season with salt and pepper.

3. Grill the squash until tender, 7 to 10 minutes. Let the squash slightly cool and then cut into cubes and cool completely.

4. In a large bowl, mix the the red snapper and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper and then add the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, avocado, minced chili, basil, zest and cumin. Let rest, at least one hour.

5. Transfer in a serving bowl and garnish with basil tips and chili rings. Serve with endive and corn chips.

Recipe developed by The Culinistas for Bowery Farming.

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