National Dish of Fiji – Fijian Kokoda
|white fish filets (Mahi-Mahi, cod or snapper)||4|
|fresh lime / lemon juice||¾ cup|
|ripe tomatoes (diced)||2|
|large chili pepper||1|
|coconut cream||100 ml|
|onion (peeled and finely diced)||1|
|green capsicum pepper||1|
|green oak leaf lettuces||3|
Fijian Kokoda is a raw fish ceviche that is served in a half coconut shell or giant clam shell in the tropical islands of Fiji. It is usually made with fresh white fish such as mahi-mahi or snapper, both of which are found in the seas surrounding the islands. The Kokoda in Fiji is prepared with plenty of citrus and coconut flavors.
Directions for Preparing Fijian Kokoda
- Remove the bones from the fish filet and discard them.
- Use a sharp knife to cut the fish into small 1 cm cubes.
- Mix the fish cubes with the lemon or lime juice in a ceramic or glass bowl as metal bowls will react with the lime and lemon juice.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for eight (8:00) hours or overnight.
- Mix occasionally with a wooden spoon.
- After marinating, the fish will appear white in color, as if cooked.
- Cut the chili and capsicum peppers into halves, then remove the seeds and chop finely.
- Add the chopped peppers to the marinated fish, along with the diced onions.
- Pour in the coconut cream.
- To ensure the fish is properly flavored by all the ingredients, give it a thorough stir.
- Season the Kokoda with adequate salt and black pepper.
- Remove the stems from the lettuce leaves, rinse them in water, and then pat dry with a paper towel.
- Line the serving platter with the lettuce leaves and then transfer the Kokoda onto it.
- Alternatively, line half coconut shells with lettuce and spoon the Kokoda into each, then serve.
Roti, Topoi, or simply a long loaf of Fiji-style bread. The bread is spread with butter and/or jam and eaten with a cup of tea. Tea is either made from black tea leaves, fresh lemon leaves, or “lemongrass”.
Lunch in the villages is usually rourou (dalo leaves) with boiled Tavioca (Cassava) or some fresh fish soup with dalo (taro).
Dinner is usually stew, curry, or soup made from meat/fish or chicken. Stews are made from meat, potatoes, and vegetables, often very healthy. Soups are also very healthy because the best cuts of meat are used and lots of fresh vegetables are added.
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