Akin to Japanese sashimi – Hawaiian Ahi Poke can be traced back to the Polynesian traditions of eating raw fish. Ahi is the Hawaiian word for tuna. This is simple and low fat meal to prepare and is a perfect light light lunch or entree. In Hawaii “Poke” bars serve numerous versions including some spicy or non-spicy varieties. All versions include soy – some include ginger, and/or garlic, macadamia nuts or green shallots.
I have road tested loads of versions and created one that I prefer. My taste buds feel that the inclusion of avocado is a mandatory – and as the avo grows very well in the tropical climate of the Hawaiian Islands it is an authentic accompaniment and its creaminess offers a good balance to the texture of the raw fish.
Omit the Sriracha if you don’t want spice and increase if you like it hot. Togarashi is a Japanese chilli pepper condiment easily found in an Asian grocers or most big supermarkets that have a well stocked Asian section.
A poke bowl is when the tuna is served with steamed rice, but when I make this at home often I don’t have time to cook rice, so serve it with some kind of cracker. Rice crackers with seaweed flavour, or rice cakes are good – both being gluten free. We also really enjoy this meal with a non traditional accompaniment – mini pappadams!!
350-400g sashimi grade tuna (ahi)
1 tblspn gluten-free soy sauce
1 tblspn mirin
1 tblspn rice vinegar
1 tsp grated ginger
1 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp Sriracha sauce (optional)
1 green spring onion, chopped
1 tsp sea same seeds
Sprinkle of Japanese chilli
1/2 avocado and a squeeze of lemon or lime
Crackers or boiled rice (see notes above)
Coriander leaves (optional)
1. Cut the tuna into small 1,5cm dice and set aside whilst you make the marinade.
2. Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Add the diced tuna and stir through the marinade gently and leave for five to ten minutes to rest and absorb the flavours. Test for seasoning and add a little more salt if required.
3. To serve. Cut the avocado into a dice the same size as the tuna and squeeze over some lime or lemon juice. A little coriander is also a nice addition if you have some lurking in your fridge.
4. Scatter the spring onions and sesame seeds over the tuna and sprinkle with the Japanese chilli pepper to taste and serve with avocado and steamed rice or crackers.
Services 4 as an entree or 2 as a light lunch.