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What is poké? Plus: how to make poké

We spoke to Jordan Sclare, executive chef at Black Roe Poké bar about the raw fish dish poké (pronounced “POE-KAY”), and how to make the best poké

What is poké?

Originally from Hawaii, poké means ‘to slice or cut’. Traditionally it’s chopped raw fish, usually with an asian influence, marinated in lime juice and soy sauce. Sesame seeds, wakame (seaweed), chilli, onion and fish eggs are a few of the usual accompaniments.

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The fish is marinated, similar to a ceviche, because the acidity in the dressing lightly cooks the fish. It’s also usually served with sticky rice.


How do you make poké?

Here are Jordan Sclare’s top five tips on how to make the best possible poké:

1. Freshness 

Fresh fish is key – only use the best, sashimi quality fish. At Black Roe we sell fish which you can take home to make your own poké.

2. Dicing

Don’t dice the fish too small or it will cure too fast, and not too large as you want the pieces to be delicate! Ideally dice the raw fish to cubes of 1.5cm by 1.5cm.

3. Marinade

Don’t overdo the marinade. For a raw fish poké I would recommend marinating for two hours, and for a cooked poke just one hour.

4. Toppings

Toppings are important to add taste and texture to your poké. At Black Roe we use nashi pear, edible flowers, fried wonton skins or fruit.

5. Temperature

The temperature at which you serve the poké is really important. It mustn’t be too cold or the taste is lost and your rice will be hard. But also the rice needs to be at room temperature and mustn’t be served hot.


Where can you eat poké? 

Black Roe Poké Bar in Mayfair, London opened in March 2016 and specialises in Pacific Rim cuisine. So that’s fresh raw fish; grilled meats (cooked on a Kiawe wood grill); and of course, poké.


*Look out for the olive version of poké in our August 2016 issue!*

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