International Poke Day

For our readers who might not know, Poke (pronounced poh-kay) is a traditional Hawaiian dish that is known the world over. The word “Poke” means “to slice or cut into pieces” in Hawaiian, and that is a good way to describe how it’s prepared. However, it doesn’t fully describe just how irresistible and delicious this dish can be.

This dish is made from raw fish (usually tuna or octopus) that is marinated in a combination of sesame oil, soy sauce, and other seasonings. It’s then served over a base of salad or rice.

Sounds delicious, doesn’t it? Well, if it sounds like something you, your family, or friends might enjoy, then perhaps you should take the time to observe International Poke Day — a holiday that’s observed every September 28th, not only in Hawaii but all around the world.

The History of International Poke Day

It’s believed that Poke was first made by native Polynesians hundreds of years before Western travelers even visited the islands in the Pacific. At first, this dish was made with raw reef fish that had been seasoned with seaweed and sea salt and then combined with crushed nuts from the kukui nut tree.

Salt was a major component of this dish because it not only added flavor to it but also helped to prevent the fish from spoiling before it could be enjoyed. While this dish might go back centuries, the modern version of this dish didn’t appear until the 1960s. This is when the name Poke was given to the dish, and instead of reef fish, ahi tuna began to be used.

This reformulated dish was then brought to the general public by Chef Sam Choy — one of the first advocates for the Hawaiian Regional Cuisine Movement of the 1990s. It was around this time that International Poke Day was invented.

Observing International Poke Day

Nowadays, there are over 100+ varieties of Poke available, so we feel one of the best ways to celebrate this holiday is to go on a Poke Tasting Tour. Of course, if you can’t fly to Hawaii and your local restaurants don’t offer a very big Poke selection, then you might have to observe this holiday by making your own Poke.

There are a ton of different recipes on the Internet that you can use to make a stunning bowl of Poke. And once you’ve created the perfect bowl of Poke, don’t forget to take a picture of it and share it with everyone online using the hashtag #InternationalPokeDay. Let us see what you’ve made!

When is it?
This year (2024)
September 28 Saturday
Next year (2025)
September 28 Sunday
Last year (2023)
September 28 Thursday
Food & Drinks