Cheese and raw fish, you say? Cheese and raw fish?!
Yes, it happened and yes it was delicious.
Growing up in San Francisco, my mother and I would take frequent trips to a Japanese restaurant on Fillmore Street called Ten-Ichi, and it was usually on a Tuesday for their Fat Tuesday special. Raw salmon, cucumber, and cream cheese filled sushi rolls stole my appetite every time we walked in the door.
Hawaiian poke is a raw fish appetizer and is served with traditional condiments such as sea salt, candlenut, seaweed, and limu. I decided to take this poke on a California spin, and incorporated avocado, mango, cucumber, and a sprinkling of mellow, creamy goat cheese called Capri (Westfield Farm, MA) . The dressing is a simple rice vinegar base, with minced ginger, diced shallot, hot sauce, and lemon juice.
It’s a great dish for a balmy summer evening, and reminds me of the fact that cheese can inspire meals from many worlds of cuisine.
- 1/4 pound VERY FRESH salmon filet (ideally a more fatty piece), cubed into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/2 Ataulfo (yellow) mango, cubed
- 1/2 avocado, cubed
- 1/2 small cucumber, peeled and cubed
- 2 Tablespoons mild creamy goat cheese, crumbled
- 1 teaspoon black sesame seeds for a final garnish
- 1 cup cooked brown rice
- 1 shallot, peeled and minced
- 1 teaspoon fresh garlic, minced
- 1 Tablespoon hot sauce
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
After cooking brown rice, let it cool to room temperature. Place prepared avocado, mango, cucumber, and salmon on top of the rice. Sprinkle with the black sesame seeds and goat cheese. In a small bowl, slowly whisk olive oil into the remaining dressing ingredients so that it emulsifies slightly. Liberally drizzle the dressing over the top of the poke bowl, so that it coats all the ingredients and makes its way to the brown rice beneath.
Best enjoyed very fresh!