Pronounced ‘ko-kon-da’, this Fijian dish is very similar to South American ceviche with the addition of coconut milk. Variations of it are popular throughout the Pacific Islands – in Samoa it is known as oka and in Tahiti by its French name poisson cru, it is ika mata in the Cook Islands, ota ika in Tonga and poke in Hawaii. It’s best to start this recipe well in advance so the fish has time to marinate – but you can marinate it for a shorter time if you like … it will still be delicious. Making coconut cream is easy – and the taste difference between fresh and canned is huge. The hollowed out coconut shell also makes a great serving bowl for the kokoda.
1 x 600g piece sashimi-grade Spanish Mackerel fillet, skin off, bones removed (see notes)
½ cup strained lime juice
2 small green chillies, finely chopped
½ red onion, finely diced
3 spring onions, finely sliced
250g grape tomatoes, quartered
1 cup coconut milk
Salt flakes, to taste
½ butter lettuce, leaves separated
Lime wedges, for serving
Cut fish into a fine dice. Place in a shallow bowl, pour over lime juice, cover and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight, stirring occasionally to ensure all pieces spend time submerged in the juice.
Combine chilli, red onion, spring onion and tomato and refrigerate until needed.
Drain fish and combine with the salad, coconut milk and salt, gently folding it through. Arrange lettuce leaves on a platter, top with fish mixture and serve lime wedges on the side.
Sashimi-grade fish is normally sold trimmed, if it isn’t, trim off any skin and dark muscle and check for bones before cutting it.
Blue-Eye Trevalla, Mahi Mahi, Prawns, Snapper, Saucer Scallop, Yellowtail Kingfish.