Warm Weather Bowls

May brings bright sunshine to my evenings and more than a little desire to stretch my toes in grass and bask in the ever-warming weather. Dinner outside is a dream and one that's well within reach, especially when dinner consists of putting a bunch of prep-ahead items in a bowl and digging in!:

That's tuna poke - a Hawaiian dish consisting of raw tuna marinated in a sauce and served with rice and a variety of toppings. Because the toppings and the type of rice can easily be switched around, it's a very customizable dish. In fact, one dinner can feature any number of combinations if you allow your friends and loved ones to pick and choose what goes in the bowls.

A common question when making dishes with raw seafood is what is and isn't okay to use. More specifically, is using frozen fish okay? Well, if you talk with top sushi chefs, they will tell you that - for certain types of fish - they actually insist on it to make it safer for consumption. In fact, when looking for ahi tuna, getting high quality fish that's been flash frozen on the boat is much better than trying to locate "fresh" at a local market … especially if you are land-locked, as I am. I like to carefully partially thaw my frozen tuna in the refrigerator and slice it while still partially frozen - it keeps it's shape and absorbs the sauce's flavor better when it can thaw into the sauce.

The toppings listed in the recipe are really suggestions. Shredded carrots, pickled ginger, edamame, crushed nori (dried seaweed), radishes, and much more all fit beautifully into these fresh bowls. It can be very fun to put out all manner of ingredients and have a poke bowl party, in fact! Pick a lovely night, invite a few friends, and enjoy!

Tuna Poke Bowls

  • 1 pound ahi tuna cut into 3/4-inch cubes
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon chili oil
  • 1/3 cup green onions thinly sliced plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 teaspoon black sesame seeds plus more for garnish
  • 2 cups rice, cooked
  • Fresh spinach
  • Steamed asparagus
  • Sliced cucumber
  • Diced avocado
  • Lightly steamed snap peas
  • Slight mini sweet peppers

In a medium sized bowl, combine the ahi tuna, soy sauce or tamari, rice vinegar, chili oil, green onions, and black sesame seeds. Stir to combine. Refrigerate covered for up to 2 hours before serving. Toss to recombine in the sauce before serving.

Add the cooked rice, poke, and desired toppings (see above or choose others to suite your tastes) to each bowl. Sprinkle with additional green onions and sesame seeds. Serve immediately.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: 40 minutes

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