This blog focuses Japanese home cooking with a few others thrown--like Tandoori chicken puffs. The blog is well-organized, well-photographed and just plain well-done.
Just One Cookbook has a pretty straightforward Japanese Potato Salad recipe that I adapted a bit for our ohana. I've noted the link, but the original recipe is as follows:
2 Russet potatoes
½ tsp. salt
2 ½ inches of carrot
¼ cup corn
2 inches of English cucumber
2 black forest ham slices
¾ cup (12 Tbsp.) Japanese mayonnaise
Salt & fresh ground black pepper
Peel potatoes and cut into 1 ½ inch pieces. They should be roughly about the same size so that they’ll be done cooking around be the same. Put potatoes in a large pot and add water until it covers all the potatoes. Boil potatoes with high heat. After water boils, lower heat to medium and cook until a skewer can goes through the potato smoothly. Drain the water from pot and put the potato back on the stove again.
On the stove, evaporate water and moisture of the potatoes over medium-high heat (for less than 1 minute). Shift the pot in circular motion so the potatoes won’t get burnt. When you see there no liquid in the pan, remove from heat. Mash the potatoes but leave some small chunks for texture. Sprinkle salt and transfer it into a big bowl and let it cool on the kitchen counter.
Meanwhile prepare a boiled egg. Remove the shell and mash the egg with a fork in a small bowl. Set aside.
Cut carrots into quarter (or half) and then slice it thinly. Put them in a microwave-safe container and cover it with water. Microwave for a few minutes until a skewer goes smoothly through the carrot (don’t overcook). Drain water and cool down. Peel the cucumbers (leave some skin on to create stripe pattern) and cut into quarters. Then slice it thinly. Dice the sliced ham.
Prepare and boil corn (canned corn kernels works as well). Add ham and veggies into the mashed potato bowl. Grind some pepper over and mix well. Add mayonnaise. Add boiled eggs and mix a bit but don’t over do it. Let it cool and keep in the fridge till you are ready to serve.
Click here for the recipe. Here is the laundry list of changes:
1) Did not evaporate the potatoes.
2) Used shredded raw carrots.
4) Used a whole can of corn.
5) Used American mayonnaise. Japanese mayonnaise can be hard to find and has a fair amount of MSG to boot.
6) Added a sesame oil, a dash of vinegar, some white pepper and pickled ginger.
7) Used 2 eggs.
8) The ham, salt and pepper stayed exactly the same.
I'm thankful to Just One Cookbook for a wonderful setting-off-point for our family's version of Japanese Potato Salad. We ended with a crunch of raw carrots and cukes against the softer texture of the cooked potatoes, ham and corn. And the shot of vinegar and sprinkling of ginger wakes everything up.
Either way, it's going to be good.
Eat Well. Be Well.