The Perfect Summer Meal: Big Island Poke

The Poke craze started in Hawaii but is making its way all over North America. Poke is a raw fish salad from Hawaiian cuisine which is healthy and delicious. With a few Poke restaurants opening up later this year, Poke will definitely be part of the next food craze in Vancouver.

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I couldn’t wait to try Poke, so heading south of the border was my chance at trying this Hawaiian dish. A little further down from Seattle sits Big Island Poke in the small city of Renton, WA.

In this “Subway-style” restaurant you build your own Poke bowl using fresh ingredients.

  1. BASE: rice, salad, or tortilla chips
  2. PROTEIN: tuna, salmon, octopus, or crab
  3. TOPPINGS: avocado, cucumber, furikake, green onion, masago, sesame seeds, sweet onion
  4. SIDES & SAUCES: seaweed salad, kimchi cucumber salad, and sauces like wasabi mayo and siracha garlic aioli

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On the left is the Hawaiian: tuna, green & sweet onion, sesame seeds, limu, shoyu, sesame oil on brown rice. I also added cucumber, seaweed salad, and wasabi mayo (spicy!)

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On the right is a self creation: Hawaiian tuna and spicy ahi tuna on white rice with cucumber, seaweed salad, tobiko, and arugula salad.

In the mason jar is the Big Island Poke home-made Passionfruit Lemonade. Super refreshing and great souvenir to take home!

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The ingredients were all very fresh and I liked the creativity in the sauces. My only concern was that I couldn’t taste the fish very well (but maybe that’s because the other flavours overpowered the fish).

I had a pleasant experience at Big Island Poke and service was fast, the place was clean, and the food was decently priced (around $11 per bowl).

I can’t wait to try the Poke restaurants that open up in Vancouver, but for now, Big Island Poke is my Poke place to go.

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Photo credits to Nathan Ng

Shishinori: Healthy Japanese Food That Won’t Leave You Feeling Guilty

Forget the bento boxes, ramen, and sushi rolls for a second. Japanese food is being served the really healthy way at Shishinori. Here, salad bowls featuring lots of healthy ingredients will leave you satisfied without feeling guilty.

Ahi Tuna Carpaccio Bowl ($12): brown rice, spinach, ahi tuna carpaccio slices, 1/2 egg, edamame, carrot, radish and apple slices, grapes, and a side of ginger.

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Hawaii Ahi Poke Bowl ($12) : leafy greens, brown rice, sprouts, chunks of tuna sashimi, avocado, carrot and radish slices, and grapes.

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From my experience, all the ingredients were very fresh and I really enjoyed my salad bowl. You’ll be getting yummy protein from the sashimi, and the brown rice will leave your tummy satisfied and full. If dessert is a must for you, daily desserts (such as matcha mousse and matcha ice cream) are available!

Shishinori is located off Broadway and Cambie and also features subs, desserts, and breakfast options. The place is tidy, small, and especially busy during lunch hour.

Shishinori: 2328 Cambie Street, Vancouver, BC