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Huron, South Dakota
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What is poke? How do you pronounce it?

Santa Monica, CA
Destination Expert
for Santa Monica
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17,850 posts
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1. Re: Poke

It is delicious!


Kapaa, Hawaii
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for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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2. Re: Poke

Po key It's raw fish usually spiced up in certain ways.

La Mirada...
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for Kauai
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3. Re: Poke




Portland, Oregon
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4. Re: Poke

I wasn't sure how to type the correct pronunciation, so I googled it. Took me just a minute or two, but even at that, I came back here to find I was a slow poke in responding.

United States
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5. Re: Poke

Poke is raw fish (typically ahi tuna) with dressing. The raw tuna is roughly diced into 1/4-1/2" chunks and tossed with the dressing. Think of it as a coarser, chunky tuna tartare.

The standard dressing often includes soy sauce (shoyu), sesame oil, fresh green onions, sesame seeds, fresh Maui onions, seaweed (limu), etc. to varying proportions. Some places will omit one or more of the ingredients I listed, some won't have raw onions in theirs, others go more heavy on the seaweed, that sort of thing. Each place makes their poke a little differently. You may also see different flavor variations--furikake/seaweed poke, wasabi poke, kimchee poke, avocado poke, or other creative takes on poke.

There are also places that will serve octopus (tako) poke, lobster poke, crab poke, mussel poke, shrimp poke, clam poke, etc. where the main ingredient is cooked, rather than raw. Tako poke is very popular and there are places that are more famous for their tako poke than their ahi tuna poke.

If you are curious as to whether or not you will like it, go to a place with a poke counter and ask for a taste before you commit. I like just regular poke over rice with seaweed salad on the side. Poke over rice is known as a "poke bowl." Here is one from Eskimo Candy in Kihei, Maui, with 4 types of poke over rice:


One of the best places to get poke on Maui is, surprisingly, a liquor store. Tamura's Fine Wines & Liquors just opened their first Maui location not too long ago. They have a few locations already on Oahu. Here's what their poke counter looks like:




As you can see, poke is not cheap, especially when fresh ahi tuna is involved. You can save a little money by looking for / asking for poke made with tuna that has been previously frozen, though the texture suffers quite a bit. Grocery stores like Foodland or Safeway often have a poke counter as well and may be running specials when you visit.

Hope this helps!

6. Re: Poke

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