The Hawaiian raw salad and appetizer known as Poke originally made with four main ingredients. They include sea food mainly cubed ahi tuna (yellowfin tuna), seaweeds, roasted kukui nuts (candlenut) and salt to taste. But today mainly due to Japanese influence this tasty appetizer comes with many other ingredients including ginger, lemon, green onions, tomatoes, soy sauce (shoyu), sesame oil, and chili pepper. Adding many ingredients to make Poke became more popular in early 1970s. Poke is a raw salad that is a staple in Hawaiian cuisine and ready to eat can be found in markets all over Hawaii.
Poke means “to slice crosswise or cut.” Raw bite size cubed fish is the main ingredient in Poke. Similar dishes that are served in Europe are fish Carpaccio and fish tartare. In Korea marinated tuna usually served over rice. In Japan, sashimi contains raw fish.
Since 1991, a festival dedicated to poke known as Sam Choy Poke Festival is held annually in Hawaii. It is an opportunity for professionals as well as amateurs to show their poke skills as well as other similar food preparations. This is why poke is not just limited to tuna. Other sea foods such as octopus, crab, and lobster are also favorites among festival participants.