Basic Poke

Makes 6 servings

Basic Poke

I like to call poke “poor man’s sushi.” Get super-fresh ahi, then pair the dish with hot rice and cold beer. Do not -- repeat, do not -- eat this with a fork. Chopsticks only. This recipe is adapted from "The Food of Paradise" by Rachel Laudan (University of Hawaii Press, 1996).
--Michele Kayal


  • 1 pound raw, sushi-grade tuna
  • ½ cup fresh (not dried) seaweed, preferably the crisp, mild, red-brown variety called ogo*
  • 1 small, red onion, thinly sliced
  • Soy sauce


Cut the fish into ½-inch cubes. Wash the seaweed, and chop it into ½-inch pieces. Mix gently with the fish, being careful not to mash it, and add soy sauce to taste. Serve well chilled.

*Variation: My favorite variation substitutes sesame oil for the soy sauce and scallion for the red onion. Add inamona (ground candlenut) and coarse salt. As with ogo, inamona can be purchased online (but brazil nut will work in a pinch).

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