This is probably the most popular salad in every household across Japan. Unlike mashed potato in the UK, it is mash with mayonnaise and vegetables and ham mixed in – the taste of mum’s cooking.
I like it with a bit of a tang, so this time I used rice vinegar and Dijon mustard as well as mayonnaise, and boiled eggs to add colour.
You can eat it just as it is, or it’s great in a sandwich, too.
Ingredients (serves 4)
- 4 potatoes
- 1/2 a cucumber
- 1/2 a carrot
- 1/2 an onion
- 60g ham
- 2 boiled eggs
- lemon juice from 1/3 of a lemon
- 1 table spoon butter
- 150g mayonnaise
- black pepper
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1. Cut the carrot into round slices and quarter them .
(*The different ways to slice (“kiri” or “giri”) all have names in Japanese. This way is called “ichou-giri” – which means gingko slice – because the quarter-circle slices look like the leaves of a gingko tree.)
Slice the cucumber into even-sized, thin slices (hitokuchi-giri), cut the onion into thin slices (hoso-giri) and rinse in water to take out the bitterness, and cut the ham into small rectangles (tanzaku-giri).
2. Chop the boiled eggs into bite-sized pieces.
3. Boil the potatoes in plenty of water for about 10 minutes, until you can pierce them easily with a fork, rinse and peel.
4. While the potatoes are still hot put them in a bowl and add the butter and lemon juice, salt and black pepper, and mash with a masher or a fork.
5. Once the potatoes have cooled a bit, add the chopped veg from above, mayonnaise, rice vinegar (you can use wine vinegar or malt vinegar if you prefer), and Dijon mustard, and mix well. Finally add the egg, mix lightly and your Japanese potato salad is done.