[Taiohae, Ile Nuka Hiva, Iles Marquesas, French Polynesia; 08º 54.9'S/140º 05.9' W]
Near the time of our departure from the principle town on Ile Nuka Hiva, we had the chance to go to a town sponsored supper event complete with some pretty amazing Polynesian dancing. The Marquesan word for dancing is haka, thus our name means strong dancing in Marquesan. The supper was a feast and included poisson cru which was the only dish emptied of the many on our table. We have done our best to try to re-create the recipe for this amazing dish.
2 lbs. - 1 kilo fresh fish tuna (or mahi mahi or wahoo, etc.)
1.5 - 2 cups lime juice (preferably squeezed from tiny juicy round limes)
2 each small red & green bell pepper
1 large or two small onion (red or white)
1 - 2 stalks celery
+/- 2 Tb. rice wine vinegar
+/- 1 cup coconut milk
optional: fresh tomatoes, 1 knuckle of fresh ginger, few tiny hot peppers
Squeeze limes and remove any seeds. Slice onions and celery (and optional ginger) very very thin. De-seed.cucumber and cut into crescents about 1" long and 1/4" square. De-seed and chop sweet peppers. Mince hot peppers. Chop (optional) fresh tomatoes.
Rinse fresh fish and slice into thin strips about 1" long. Place in large bowl and add lime juice and rice wine vinegar. Stir thoroughly to coat fish. Add all veggies and toss again. Transfer to a tightly covered container and place in a refrigerator up to a number of hours to overnight. Toss with a clean spoon as required. If the marinade ceases to be acidic, add a bit more lime juice or vinegar. Fish should turn opaque at least along its edges. Stir in coconut milk just before serving.
Steamed jasmine rice makes a nice accompaniment.