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  • Writer's pictureDaily Travel Dose

Poisson Cru - French Polynesia in a bowl

Poisson cru, or e’ia ota (ee-ah oh-tah) in Tahitian, is Tahiti’s signature dish. At its most traditional, poisson cru (French for “raw fish”) is fish, lime, coconut milk, and vegetables - a delicious, fresh salad that calls to mind blue lagoons and island breezes. It is easily customized by adding the ingredients you favor, and the texture varies depending on how you slice (or chop) your fish and vegetables. The quantities in the recipe below can be adjusted to your taste, but this is a dish that is meant to highlight fresh fish, so keep that in mind when adding or omitting ingredients. This light, refreshing appetizer is as easily put together by your local guide while you sun on a motu (tiny island) in French Polynesia, as it is by you in your own kitchen at home. On the beach, and in the kitchen, it all comes together in minutes.

The key is to give the fish some time to marinate in the lime juice. The acid from the citrus cooks the fish, changing the translucent surface to an opaque color. Most chefs suggest marinating the tuna in lime for 5-10 minutes and serving soon after. If you prefer to serve this dish at a cooler temperature, chill the coconut milk ahead of time and marinate the fish in your refrigerator.

Poisson Cru 1lb raw ahi tuna (sashimi-grade), diced into ½ inch cubes 1 tomato, chopped and drained 1 small white onion, sliced thinly ½ c. fresh lime juice (about 2 limes) ¾ c. coconut milk, fresh if you have access to it; or canned light coconut milk (shake well) 1/2 cucumber, peeled, seeded and drained salt & pepper to taste green onions to garnish

(optional substitutions or add-ons) carrots, grated or julienned bell pepper, sliced 4-5 green onions, sliced or minced (in lieu of white onion) fresh chile, seeded and minced shredded coconut

Marinate the tuna in lime juice for 5-10 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and toss well. 

Garnish and serve immediately,

Repost and picture from Paul Gauguin cruise line.

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