I took some friends to the Panama City fish market recently, and they were amazed at how good the ceviche was. One friend said it was unequivocally the best ceviche she had ever tasted. You can buy a container of ceviche to take home with you, or you can enjoy it as a snack right there at the fish market. The price ranges from $1-$4 for a heaping Styrofoam cup full of the fresh ceviche, and you get soda crackers on the side.
One of the things I like best about the fish market is that it doesn't smell fishy. Although you won't mistake your surroundings for a bakery, the ultra-fresh fish is kept on ice, which keeps the smell from getting out of control.
The day this photo was taken, I was at the fish marketing looking for Ahi Tuna. I told this fishmonger that I wanted a medium-sized whole Ahi tuna, and he came back with a 56-pound monster. For kicks, I had him price it. For $112 (just $2 per pound), I could have fed an entire football team. Since I don't have that many hungry friends, I opted for the 6-pound slab that he's holding in his hand. He cut the skin and fat off and cut them into sushi-type fillets for a whopping $16. Yes, it's a bit more than $2 per pound, but it's less than one good Ahi Tuna Tower at my favorite sushi house in Dallas.
I seared the tuna and served it rare with Coconut Pineapple Brown Rice. Even though we had eaten at some very nice restaurants, my guests thought this meal was one of the highlights of their Panama trip.