We know that preparing our own food is a great way to have control over what we eat. We know that eating good quality food has a good effect on our health. However, often we find ourselves thinking “I know I should eat better, but I don’t know WHAT to make!” At FitMentality, we like to share ideas on what you may want to rustle up in your kitchen. As written in previous articles, just because one likes to eat a healthy diet meant to aid us in creating/sustaining strong/healthy bodies, does not mean we do not love food. On the contrary, we love how making good (tasting and quality) makes us feel great.
Tom Lee is a business development associate for the Santa Barbara Fish Market where you can support local fishermen and buy fresh seafood online or buy fresh fish online. He stopped by FM to share his own recipe. Since I, myself, have little experience in the seafood realm of the culinary arts, I was excited to welcome Tom for a guest post. Enjoy.
Homemade Salmon Poke
If you’re new to Poke dishes, it is basically a very simple dish that consists of raw fish “marinated” in a soy sauce based sauce. This recipe is a twist on the more popular Hawaiian dish of Ahi (Tuna) Poke. The only difference in this recipe is that salmon is used instead of tuna and that no avocado is used. Tuna is a much lighter tasting fish and avocado gives Ahi Poke a more buttery taste. However, salmon is little bit more fatty (containing lots of healthy Omega-3 fatty acids) and avocados in this dish might make it too rich tasting.
Since this dish uses raw fish, only the freshest fish will do. When purchasing, always try and perform a smell test. Fresh fish should never have any type of “fishy” smell to it. Also when purchasing, make sure to ask your salmon fillet to be de-boned and skinned. Once you have your salmon fillet, it’s all down hill from here. The roasted sesame seeds, sesame oil, and soy sauce can usually be found in the Asian section of your local grocery store.
This is a pretty easy dish to make, even if you have little experience in the kitchen. You only need to cut 3 things and mix together the rest of the measured ingredients. Remember to keep the fish cold (refrigerated) until it’s time to cut it and mix with the rest of the ingredients. After everything is mixed, letting it sit for a few minutes will really let all of the flavors soak into the salmon. Salmon Poke can be eaten by itself, but many prefer it to be served on bread chips or crackers. Healthier alternatives would be to serve it on top of cucumber slices or whole-wheat crackers.
8 Ounces King Salmon
¼ Cup Shallots
¼ Cup Green Onions
½ Roasted Sesame Seeds
¼ Teaspoon Siracha Garlic Chili Sauce
1 ½ Tablespoon Low Sodium Soy Sauce
Few Drops of Sesame Oil
1. Chop enough green onions to fill up a ¼ cup.
2. Thinly slice enough shallots to fill up a ¼ cup.
3. Cut up the skinless salmon fillet into small pieces, about the size of ¼” cubes.
4. Put all of the ingredients into a small bowl and mix together. You want to do this gently so you do not squish and mash the fish.
5. Let sit for about 15 minutes in the refrigerator before serving.
You may be thinking “Wait, raw fish?” Is this safe? I asked Tom to address this concern. He explained the following:
Eating any type of meat, such as chicken, pork, or even steak can have risks. Seafood is no exception. In this case with salmon, we have a few things to check to make sure the food we are eating is safe. First off, there are two types of fish that can be eaten raw: sashimi grade fish and fresh grade fish. Sashimi quality fish means the fish has been frozen at a very cold temperature for a set amount of time, usually a few days or more. This is done in order to kill off any parasites. Fresh fish is fish that has never been frozen. From a quality fish department, there is no difference in taste from sashimi grade and fresh grade fish. The only worry would be parasites. With that said, it should be noted that a good fish market will have quality fishmongers who can easily spot out parasites and remove them from the fish. The second main concern is bacteria. A cold environment prevents bacteria from growing on fish. When buying fish, it is always good to ask for ice to accompany your purchase until you reach home. When cutting the fish, make sure you do it as quick as possible, and then return the fish to the refrigerator until needed. Lastly, the smell of fish is a great indicator of freshness. It’s a strange statement to make, but fresh fish should not smell fishy. Fresh fish should have a relatively low scent. If there is any scent it should be a light ocean scent. Often times you can ask a fishmonger to smell the fish before you buy it. If it smells bad at all, don’t buy it. I personally have been eating raw fish for at least 10 years now, both fresh and sashimi grade. Not once have I gotten sick. Stick to a reputable and quality fish market and you shouldn’t have any problems!
As with any food preparation, one must take responsibility over what we choose to prepare and how we choose to do so. FitMentality assumes no responsibility over options written about on our website. We simple share what has worked for us, so that we each may make our own decisions. As always, consult with your doctor before making fitness/diet adjustments.