I have to say that my favorite form of social media is Instagram. I am on that app ALL THE TIME. The format is genius. Pictures are worth a thousand words and I love looking at pictures. Food pictures are my favorite. Shameless plug here – I post a ton of food pictures!
Instagram is a good way for me to see what types of food is trending. The one food item that has blown up on Instagram this year in my opinion is poke.
Poke /poʊˈkeɪ/ is a raw fish salad served as an appetizer in Hawaiian cuisine, and sometimes as an entree. Poke is the Hawaiian verb for “section” or “to slice or cut”. Traditional forms are aku (an oily tuna) and he’e (octopus). Increasingly popular ahi poke is generally made with yellowfin tuna. Adaptations may feature raw salmon or various shellfish as a main ingredient served raw with the common “poke” seasonings. – Wikipedia
Poke reminds me a lot of chirashi sushi (slices of raw seafood over sushi rice) so I knew that I would like it. It took a while, but poke restaurants are starting to pop up in North Texas. One restaurant is Below 40 Poke House which is located at 1921 Preston Road in Plano. It’s behind the Chase bank that’s next to Osaka’s.
The menu at Below 40 is not large. It’s not meant to be. You step up to the counter and go through each step picking your ingredients.
From what I can tell poke bowl restaurants serve the mixed seafood over regular rice. That is probably the one thing that I wasn’t sure if I was going to like about this dish. I’m used to the vinegar sushi rice in chirashi bowls and was iffy about the less flavorful option.
I chose the following options for my first bowl of poke:
- Size: Regular
- Base: White Rice
- Proteins: Salmon & Scallop
- Sauce: Sriracha Aioli
- Sides: Crab Meat & Seaweed Salad
- Add-Ons: Green Onion
- Top it Off: Masago, Dried Seaweed & Furikake
- Additional: Avocado
To my pleasant surprise I liked the regular white rice with this dish. It went really well together. I really liked the sriracha aioli. The combination of ingredients that I chose reminded me a lot of ahi towers that you can get at sushi restaurants. It looks like it when it’s all deconstructed, doesn’t it?
I’ve had poke bowls at Below 40 twice now. The second time I changed up the ingredients by one. I got red snapper instead of scallops. I really should change it up so that I can try other flavors, but I liked the combination that I got the first time so much that I had to repeat it.
If you haven’t tried poke before and would like to I recommend Below 40 Poke House.