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Monday, May 28, 2012

Monday Meal: Poke Salad

Posted By on May 28, 2012, 11:00 AM

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One of my fondest food memories is of eating poke salad (also spelled "poki") with my wife on a Maui beach during my honeymoon, accompanied by Salon Champagne. It's a long story how that happened. --- We'd intended to drink the Salon in a fancy restaurant, but those plans went awry and we wound up on the beach sipping our fancy Champagne from plastic cups and eating store-bought poke salad. It was perfect!

Poke salad -- which is made using raw tuna -- is as commonplace in Hawaiian grocery stores as potato salad is here. It's delicious and very easy to make. There's no cooking involved; it's essentially nothing more than raw tuna marinated in a mixture of soy sauce, sesame oil, chili sauce and a few other ingredients. It makes for a terrific warm-weather lunch or dinner item.

Here is a poke salad recipe that I like a lot. You can tweak it and add ingredients, as you see fit. In Hawaii, everybody seems to have their own unique poke salad secret recipe.

Ingredients:

3/4 lb. sushi grade ahi tuna (don't even think about trying this without top-notch sushi-grade fish)

2-3 green onions, minced

1 small or 1/2 large red onion, minced

juice of 1/2 lemon

3 Tbs. sesame oil

1 Tbs. mirin

1 Tbs. rice wine

1 Tbs. light soy sauce

1 Tbs. grated fresh ginger

red chili sauce, to taste (I like to use Sambal Oelek or Sriracha)

1 Tbs. toasted sesame seeds (black or white)

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Method:

Begin by combining all of the ingredients except the tuna in a mixing bowl.

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Stir the mixture to blend thoroughly.

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Using a very sharp knife, cut the ahi tuna into small cubes, about 1/2 inch in size.

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Place the tuna in the bowl with the poke dressing.

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Toss gently to coat the tuna with the dressing.

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Refrigerate the poke salad for a half-hour or so before serving to allow the flavors to intermingle.

Serve chilled or at room temperature.

The poke salad here is pictured with sesame noodles on the side.

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