Poke ain’t no joke (And yes, it’s pronounced POH-kay). This Hawaiian dish that features fresh raw fish marinated in a mixture that can include mayonnaise, rice vinegar, citrus juice and more exotic ingredients such as hijiki and wakame (dried seaweeds). Poke is popping up on restaurant menus everywhere and there are even poke restaurants that take their poke very seriously! Don’t be intimidated by how complicated poke bowls appear – they’re super easy to make at home. My Sesame Salmon Poke is a prime example!
The secret to perfect poke is getting the freshest fish possible. Go to a fish market or somewhere you can speak to the fish monger (fish monger is to fish what a butcher is to meat). That way you can ask someone if the salmon you’re buying is fresh enough/high enough quality to be eaten raw. It should be labeled as “sushi grade” salmon. After all, poke bowls are essentially deconstructed sushi. If you wouldn’t eat the salmon as a piece of sashimi, it’s not fit for your poke!
Poke is sometimes sweetened with some honey, but honestly, it doesn’t need it. There is so much flavor going on in your poke with the tartness from the lime and umami flavor from the tamari, your senses will be happy without added sugars.
My Sesame Salmon Poke is gluten-free because I’ve substituted soy sauce for tamari. When you use low sodium tamari, you guarantee your homemade version will be lower in sodium than your classic poke bowl.
How to Make a Poke Bowl
You can eat your poke straight up or create a poke bowl by layering it on top of brown rice, black rice, brown rice noodles, buckwheat noodles, kelp noodles or zucchini noodles.
I like to add some extra vegetables to my poke bowl and usually grate up some carrots, slice cucumbers into half moons and slice some sugar snap peas into strips. I might even add in some cubed avocado for extra creaminess. So delicious!
Sesame Salmon Poke Bowl
Time to create your new summer go-to meal! It’s perfect for entertaining and will keep in the fridge for up to 2 days. Hope you love these flavors as much as I do. Enjoy!