A typical Hawaiian poke consists of ahi sashimi, seaweed, and chile pepper tossed with shoyu (a.k.a. soy sauce) and sesame oil, but nowadays it’s common for kitchens to swap out the ahi for octopus, salmon, or other sea creatures, and to change up the other ingredients, too. Like ceviche, the dish can be dressed down and eaten on the go or gussied up as a fancy appetizer; either way, finding a good one stateside can be tricky.
A recent discussion on Chowhound shines a light on Poke-Poke, a newish stand on the Venice Beach Boardwalk owned by two local residents with a fondness for fish. The menu is simple: five types of made-to-order poke served with or without rice, plus a short list of add-ons like pickled ginger, masago (roe), and crushed red pepper. There's the original poke with ahi and green and white onions, a version with spicy tuna, and one with wasabi sauce and black sesame seeds. For something fish-free and a bit contemporary, sample the version with kale, avocado, carrots, and macadamia nuts.
Poke-Poke [Westside – Beaches]
1827 Ocean Front Walk, Venice
Discuss: Ahi Poke to go?
Photo from Poke-Poke / Facebook