My husband is out of town! And you know what that means?!?! Lots of raw fish. Okay, maybe that is not what you had in mind, but it sure as heck is what I was thinking about! He likes raw fish and all, juuuust not in the quantity that I do. Which I get, except that I don’t I could live eat and breath poke, sashimi, sushi, etc… It is my jam, my go to, my fav, the one things I never tire of. My kids and husband are cool too and/or something like that. Okay, fine, I do love them more. But I am going to go out on a limb here and say that I want to eat them LESS. I think we can all agree that is fair?
I live in Hawaii. I am just throwing that out there in case you are new to the blog. Maybe you are a long time reader, but your life doesn’t revolve around the current happenings of mine. I get it. Its cool. Really, my feelings aren’t hurt.
Poke is a very Hawaiian dish. In fact, poke means “to section” or “to slice or cut” in Hawaiian. Did I consult the oracle of Google for that? Yes, yes I did. But head knowledge or internet search knowledge, it is still true. Poke takes many forms. We have entire grocer display fridges devoted to the many varieties of poke here. And since I am hopelessly in love with raw fish, I am now also a happy camper. I, like many, gravitate towards ahi, of yellow fin tuna, poke. But there are so many different varieties of poke out there. Or as I am sure many a single persons have heard “there are plenty of fish in the sea”. And some genius murdered those fish and turned them into poke! Tako (octopus), spicy ahi, shoyu ahi, salmon, smoked salmon, shrimp, ahi with Maui onions and seaweed, and more.
Another thing I love about living in Hawaii is the fish markets. Whether you are at the Honolulu Pier for the fish auction, or in Chinatown at Nakazato’s… the fish is fresh caught and delicious. Naturally, the fresh ahi yields it’s self quite well to quality poke and sashimi. Since the fish is fresh caught here, you will find many places that make raw ahi poke without using sashimi grade fish. World of caution… only do that with FRESH LOCAL fish, mmmk? If you are mainland, particularly if you are not coastal, please do me, yourself and your body a solid and ask your grocer for sashimi grade ahi. I am hoping this is a no brainer, but just in case there is any confusion, do not go grab frozen ahi, defrost it and serve it raw. There is one exception… if you are failing at your diet and think that food poisoning is the most sure fire way to lose weight fast. Other than that a) fresh market fish or b) sashimi grade fish.
A huge advantage to poke bowls is how customizable they are. The main body of the recipe that I am sharing with you is for the spicy ahi poke. The bowls themselves can have a wide variety ingredients going into them. I typically do sushi rice (my husband can ahve 4 servings of rice, while I have 1), julienned cucumbers, thinly sliced avocado, diced mango, sprouts, radishes and seaweed salad. Then I add sriracha, soy and sesame seeds. You could make your base shredded cabbage or lettuce, cauliflower “rice”, all sprouts, or anything else you can dream up. Your toppings also can contain anything you would like: pickled onions, scallions, spicy mayo, pickled vegetables, shredded carrots, pickled ginger, won-ton strips, edamame… the sky is the limit. You can make it light and healthy, or indulgent and filling. Hey, want an appetizer? Fry up some tortillas and make tostada bites.
Lets get into the poke, shall we?
For the Spicy Ahi Poke:
1 1/2 lbs sashimi grade ahi
1/2 tsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp rice wine vinegar
1/2 tsp sesame oil
.15 lbs tobiko
2 tbsp Japanese mayo (regular will work)
2 tbsp sriracha
2-3 tbsp diced scallions
1 tsp chooped cilantro leaves
1/2 tsp grated ginger
1/2 tsp lime juice
1/2 tsp sesame seeds
1. Cut your ahi into 1/2″ – 1″ cubes.
2. Add it to a lidded mixing bowl.
3. Mix in soy sauce, rice wine vinegar and sesame oil. Stir gently and allow it to marinate for 10 minutes or so before adding any other ingredients.
4. Add the tobiko.
5. In a separate bowl, make the spicy mayonnaise.
6. Whisk together mayo, sriracha, grated ginger and lime juice. Add diced scallions and cilantro and stir again.
7. Carefully fold the spicy mayonnaise into the marinated ahi/tabiko mixture.
8. Add sesame seeds and store in a lidded container in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve.
Then there is the other stuff.
As mentioned above, there are a lot of options here.
For a Base:
Sushi Rice (short grain rice with rice wine vinegar, salt and sugar mixed in)
Cucumber ( I like to julienne English cucumbers)
Asian Pickled Vegetables
It truly is a customizable and super scrumptious beauty.