People all over the world are freaking out over poke bowls, but what exactly are these delicacies? Translated from Hawaiian, poke means “to slice or cut,” and often refers to raw fish or meat. This unique dish is traditionally made with the cheaper part of a firm fish (like the tail or head), before it is cut into thick cubes. This nutritious, customizable dish is ubiquitous in Hawaii, and has made its way to mainland USA.

Now, let’s take a look at what ingredients make up a classic poke bowl.

Rice

Most poke bowls you find in restaurants today start with a base layer of jasmine rice, but many poke places will let you choose the rice you’d like to use. You can often choose from brown rice, coconut jasmine rice, soba noodles, and even leafy greens (if you’re trying to avoid carbohydrates). International Poke Company offers bamboo rice, brown rice, forbidden rice, glass noodles, and organic mixed greens. According to Jack Liang, a partner at the popular restaurant The PokeSpot in New York City, “Poke bowls can feature healthy options, like zucchini noodles, or indulgent ones, like spicy mayo.”

Protein

Most poke restaurants will tell you that the protein you choose is the foundation of your poke bowl. The most popular poke bowl protein is fresh raw fish, like ahi tuna, salmon, or shrimp. You can also dress your poke bowl with tofu or jackfruit, a nutrient dense superfood, if you feel so inclined.

Vegetables

Poke bowls are often topped with a variety of fresh vegetables. Some popular poke vegetables are listed below.

  • Avocado
  • Cilantro
  • Edamame
  • Scallions
  • Cucumber
  • Mango
  • Pickled Ginger
  • Cabbage

Other exciting ingredients can include chilies, snow peas, and jicama.

Dressing

When poke chefs want to highlight the raw fish in your bowl, they’ll often create a delicious dressing to drizzle on top of the fish, rice, and vegetables. Most sauces are made with a soy sauce base, giving you a nice compliment to the fish. Some chefs say that the fattier the fish, the more aggressive the dressing should be. At trendy poke restaurants, look for signature sauces that range from sweet to spicy and crisp to creamy.

Why Eat Poke?

You may be wondering, “Why should I eat this delicious dish?” Well, for starters, poke is one of the healthiest new food trends around. The average poke bowl consists of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, which can help to protect your heart and reduce the risk of heart disease and high blood pressure. Consuming fish has also been shown to lower one’s risk of depression as well.

If you’re looking for a poke restaurant in Colorado Springs, stop by International Poke Company today!