Melt in your Mouth Poke

I apologize in advance, because if you actually make this poke, you will never eat any other poke.   So if you enjoy Safeway’s poke, your neighbor’s poke, or just the ability to eat poke at all those backyard luaus that you attend, just ignore this post.  But if you want amazing, melt-in-your-mouth poke that even self-admitting ‘non-fish’ eaters enjoy, go ahead and give this a try.  As in all recipes, feel free to adjust the ratios to taste.

Melt-in-your-Mouth Ahi Poke Recipe


  • 5 parts sesame oil
  • 2 parts chili oil
  • 3 parts brown sugar
  • 7 parts soy sauce
  • Sashimi grade ahi (yellow-fin tuna) or aku, cut into bit sized chunks (approximately equal parts fish to sauce ratio, ex- 1 cup of fish to 1 cup sauce…)
  • Garnishes- sesame seeds, chopped avocado, furikake, chopped onions, green onions


Mix the oils together.  Add sugar and mix. Add soy sauce and mix.  Chill for 20 minutes.  Add fish and mix.  Serve immediate or marinate an hour or as desired, garnishing before serving.   Grab your own helping and then quickly back away from the bowl. Its like feeding sharks.

Fishing for ideas

The joke in our house is that we are sort of like the Bubba Gump of the fish world.  We have fish tacos, fish burgers, raw fish, grilled fish, baked fish, seared fish, and on and on.   We have our favorite recipes, which we will share here as we make them, and will post results of our experiments as well!  If you have ideas or suggestions for fish preparations- namely, mahi, ahi and ono (and please, for you mainland readers, let me know if you need translations- this time its ‘dorado, tuna and wahoo’)!

As a little background, Matt is a full-time school teacher and a part-time commercial fisherman.  He fishes off our boat ‘Sweet Alexandra’, along Maui’s North Shore.  He sells the majority of his catch to local restaurants and fish wholesalers, and usually keeps one or two of the smaller fish for us.

This is not one of the smaller fish…  

Local Love on Valentine’s Day

Matt and I have always shunned restaurants on Valentine’s Day, as I find cooking with your partner to be very romantic, and besides, we normally eat better at home anyway.  Once kids became part of the equation, things didn’t really change, even if it was slightly less ‘intimate’.

In years past we’ve made cornish games hens, because there’s something strangely sensual about tearing apart a tiny, delicious chicken with your hands, but with fresh fish in the fridge, it seemed kind of silly to get the little birds.  I came up with the side dish of marinated sliced beets (thinly sliced with my new mandolin cut into heart shaped and letters) with goat cheese, and beet greens, sauteed with garlic and craisins. Matt created the fish dish, searing some ahi (big-eye tuna, which he caught), that was wrapped in nori and crusted with pistachios.  We threw on some Kula avocados for good measure, and viola!

Dessert was a classic flourless chocolate cake.   Matt’s parents came for dinner the night before, as his ER nurse mother was called in for the night shift on the holiday.   I made a quick, healthy strawberry shortcake, since we had berries and whip cream.   Matt nervously asked if we could still have chocolate cake for Valentines!   I made the cake early in the day, maybe just a little too early as I couldn’t resist taking a small slice.