500g firm-fleshed fish such as line-caught kingfish or line- or purse-seine caught trevally, cut into 3cm pieces
¼ cup lime juice (or use all lemon juice)
¼ cup lemon juice
½ cup coconut milk
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1-2 red or green chillies, minced
½ punnet cherry tomatoes, quartered
¼ telegraph cucumber, deseeded and cut into small dice
½ red, yellow or green capsicum, diced
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ cup coriander leaves
hot sauce to taste

Kokoda, oka, poke, oka aka or ika mata are all variations of the raw fish salad found throughout the Pacific. This Cook Islands version is one of my favourites and makes for a hassle-free summer meal. My favourite brand of coconut milk to use is the Trade Aid brand, but be sure to shake the can well as it does separate into layers of cream and milk.


1.Put the fish into a non-reactive bowl with the lime and lemon juice and leave to marinate for a minimum of 30 minutes, or up to overnight depending on how ‘cooked’ you like the fish to be. I prefer it around the 3-hour mark.
2.Drain the juice from the fish, then mix the fish with the coconut milk, vegetables and salt.
3.Add the coriander just before serving and adjust seasoning to taste.
4.Add or serve with hot sauce as required.
5.Best served chilled.

Recipes & food styling Ginny Grant / Photography Aaron McLean / Styling Ellen J Hemmings

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