Updated post on 12-9-2016
Updated a recipe to convert into a vegetarian recipe. For vegetarian recipe, please omit the ingredients in red. This vegetarian recipe is only suitable for those who takes eggs (蛋素）. Those who did not take eggs, this recipe cannot be used as store bought mayonnaise sauce has eggs unless you prepare your own milk less, egg less mayonnaise.
As a Chinese who is born and raised in Malaysia, potato salad is nothing new to me. I used to prepare this salad for pot luck gathering as it is one of the simplest recipe to prepare. Just cut the potatoes into cubes, shred the chicken breast, put some black pepper, salt, add mayonnaise or thousand island dressings, stir and it was done. It is easy to prepare, easy to bring to host house, can be chilled, do not spoil easily and most important of all, it is delicious and presentable.
Not only for gatherings, I also have my fair share of potatoes salad at restaurants. it is a very common item in the buffet where there bound to have potatoes salad as one of the items. I remembered I ate a lot when I am stationed overseas where I have to eat buffet on a daily basis.
However, these potatoes salad does not taste like what is being served in Japanese restaurant be it texture and taste. Most who have tried it will give positive remarks and I like it especially it is slightly chilled. This Japanese potatoes salad is rather new to me and I only tried it about a year ago.
If I am not preparing this recipe, I will not know the exact difference. The difference is not the types of vegetable or meat used, it is the way of preparation and the type of mayonnaise used. For this recipe, there is a need to use Japanese mayonnaise. This mayonnaise is very common in Singapore supermarket or even provision stores at a reasonable price. It is usually not in the glass bottle but in a plastic squeezable bottle.
I was made to understand that the Japanese mayonnaise taste slightly different because it uses only egg yolk and Japanese vinegar as opposed to Western mayonnaise that used whole eggs and distilled vinegar. Well, I am unsure how obvious is the difference resulted from this, but I personally find that Japanese mayonnaise is creamier and sweeter that suits my Asian taste bud. For this illustration, as I do not have Japanese mayonnaise with me, I have substituted it with normal mayonnaise.
The second most important factor is mashed potatoes being used instead of cut potatoes. Mashed potatoes will provide a creamier effect and that creates the distinctive difference. When one is enjoying Japanese potatoes salad, it is the creamier effect that differentiate it from the Western potatoes salad.
Thirdly is there are more types of vegetables being used as compared to American potatoes salad. Usually, carrots, sweet corns, onions, cucumbers, peas are added.
This is definitely a simple doable no frill recipe. Almost all the ingredients’ quantities are for guidance. You can add a bit more or less of what your family prefer. I am rather conservative with the estimation of the mayonnaise used but feel free to add more if you want ultra creamy Japanese potatoes salad. But what I will insist is just you must use mashed potatoes to taste the difference.
WHAT IS REQUIRED
Servings: 4-6 Adult Servings
- 3 medium size potatoes
- 100 grams of ham (please omit for vegetarian recipe)
- 3 hard boiled eggs
- 1 medium size onion (please omit for vegetarian recipe)
- 1 small size Japanese cucumber
- 1 medium size sweet corn
- 1 small size carrot
- 3 tablespoons of Japanese mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon of Japanese rice vinegar (optional)
- Pinches of salt
- Dashes of white pepper or black pepper
STEPS OF PREPARATION
- Cut the ham into 1 cube and set side.
- Extract the corn kernel, cut the carrots and onion into small cubes and set aside.
- Slice the cucumber into small pieces, add pinches of salt and set aside. After 5 minutes squeeze the juices from the cucumber.
- Cut the hard boil eggs into small pieces, keep aside.
- Heat up a small pot of water with pinches of salt, add the sweet corns, diced carrots and chopped onions. Let it boil for 2 minutes, drain and set aside.
- Use the same pot of water to boil the potatoes until soft. Transfer the boiled potatoes into a mixing bowl.
- Mash the potatoes in a coarse form with some bit to bite, add all the other ingredients followed by the mayonnaise, salt, vinegar and pepper powder. Stir until well mixed. Best served as a side dish be it at room temperature or chilled.
This dish is simple yet awesome. Whether or not is to use Japanese Mayonnaise will be up to individual. Feel free to adjust the quantity of the ingredients to suit your family’s taste buds. If you found that it is too salty, you can add some condensed milk to neutralize the saltiness and provide creaminess. Lastly, this is rather addictive due to the smoothness effect of the mashed potatoes unlike the traditional cube like potatoes salad.
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