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Ahi Tuna Poke

Feel Like Cooking for Valentine’s Day? I’m Here To Help!

Amanda Haas
Tuna tartare was all the rage when I moved to San Francisco in 1994, and it’s been on menus ever since! And with good reason: the silky texture of high-quality tuna contrasted with the crunch of nuts or cucumbers is highly addictive. The best part about tuna tartare is that it’s incredibly versatile. You can take it from Latin to Asian-inspired simply by changing the oil or acid you choose. This version is influenced by the Hawaiian tuna poke bowl. Sesame oil and tamari lend depth, and the cucumber, green onions, and macadamia nuts give it crunch and contrast. If you want, you can skip the rice paper and mayo, but with it, it is the most decadent, perfect poke you’ll ever taste. 
Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Servings 6 people


Pickled Cucumber

  • 1/2 English cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 3 tbsp packed brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt

Miso Mayonnaise

  • 1 tbsp miso paste
  • 1 tbsp hot water
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise

Rice Crisps

  • Canola oil, for frying
  • 10 spring roll rice wrappers, cut into sixths
  • Kosher salt

Tuna Tartare

  • 1 lb fresh ahi-grade tuna, cut into 1/2 inch dice
  • 1 avocado, cut into 1/2 inch dice
  • 1/2 cup macadamia nuts, chopped
  • 3 green onions, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp tamari
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • Black sesame seeds for garnish


To make the Pickled Cucumber

  • Place the sliced cucumber in a ceramic or glass bowl. In a small saucepan over high heat, combine the water, vinegar, sugar, and salt and bring to a boil. Stir to dissolve the salt and sugar, then pour the liquid over the cucumber. Let stand until cooled to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate until ready to use. 

To make the Miso Mayonnaise

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the miso paste and hot water until smooth. Stir in the mayonnaise. Set aside.

To make the Rice Crisps

  • Fill a medium saucepan two-thirds full with canola oil and heat to 350°F. Carefully place a few rice wrapper triangles in the oil until they turn white and puff, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate, and sprinkle with salt. Repeat with the remaining wrappers.

To make the Tuna Tartare

  • In a large mixing bowl, gently fold together the tuna, avocado, macadamia nuts, and 2 Tbsp of the green onions
  • Drain the pickled cucumber slices from their liquid, and add the slices to the bowl. 
  • Add the tamari, mirin, and sesame oil, and gently fold to coat the tuna mixture. 
  • Place 1 tsp of the miso mayonnaise on a rice crisp, then top with tuna tartare. Repeat with the remaining crisps, mayonnaise, and tuna. 
  • Arrange them on a platter, then garnish with black sesame seeds and the remaining green onions. Serve.


Reprinted from The Vibrant Life by Amanda Haas with permission by Chronicle Books, 2019
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