Ok folks, after last week’s Spam Special for my #LetsLunch potluck, it’s back to our regularly scheduled programming. (That said, in case you’re wondering how I could allow Spam to appear here, my guiding principle for happy and healthy eating is this: Not everything has to be healthy, and with the exception of drugs and poison, I think it’s OK to sample pretty much any food on the rare occasion. Yes, even Spam.)
But to redeem my healthy cooking reputation, here’s a related, Hawaiian-themed recipe. For those of you who have been to the Islands, you may be familiar with poke, the delicious raw fish (often tuna or salmon) salad dressed in Japanese flavors with sesame oil, soy sauce, and sometimes furikake. You may be familiar with furikake from my furikake kale chips recipe, but if you missed that, this is the delicious Japanese seasoning blend of toasted seaweed, sesame seeds, salt, sugar and occasionally other flavors like wasabi and bonito. It’s great on everything. It’s widely available in ordinary supermarkets in the Asian aisle in California, but if you don’t have access, you could also crush some roasted seaweed, add some toasted sesame seeds with a pinch of salt and sugar, and make your own.
This tomato variation on poke is my invention. Faced with a bounty of delicious summer tomatoes last summer, I had the inspiration to make a salad with Japanese flavors. Before I knew it, I had diced up some tomatoes, drizzled on some sesame oil and sprinkled it with furikake, and voila! A vegan version of poke was born.
To your health!
* * *
The Doctor’s Spicebox Tomato Poke
Roma tomatoes (ideally, but any slightly firm tomato will do)
toasted sesame oil (Kadoya brand is my favorite)
1. Dice desired amount of tomatoes into small pieces and place into a bowl.
2. Drizzle with a small amount of sesame oil (try 1/2 tsp per tomato to start) and toss to coat.
3. Sprinkle with desired amount of furikake.
4. Eat on its own, of if you want to enjoy it one of the ways poke is savored in Hawaii, make a poke bowl by serving over steamed rice.