Potato salad is popular in Korea, which surprises many non-Asians. Besides being enjoyed as a side dish, it is used as a sandwich filling, an idea that is uncommon in Western cuisine.
So what makes Korean potato salad quintessentially Korean and different from American potato salad (with its heavy emphasis on mayonnaise) and German potato salad (with its bacon and vinegar ingredients)?
Unlike Western versions of this popular side dish, Korean potato salad can include fruit and vegetables. This version, for example, includes a carrot, an apple, and half a cucumber, along with the expected potatoes. It also includes half an onion, which adds some tangy flavor to the mix but is not uncommon in Western recipes.
There's also no vinegary component to this Korean potato salad—the recipe relies only on mayonnaise to blend the various ingredients.
Finally, feel free to experiment with some of your own additions to this Korean potato salad. Half a cup of sweet corn can add some nice flavor, and some people even use macaroni elbows in their potato salads.
- 4 small to medium potatoes, peeled and cubed.
- 1 small carrot, cut into small chunks
- 2 eggs, hard-boiled, yolks removed and cut into small chunks
- 1/2 small cucumber, thinly sliced
- 1/2 small yellow or sweet onion, thinly sliced and diced
- 1 small apple, cut into small chunks
- 3/4 cup mayonnaise
- Optional: 1/4 cup ham or Canadian bacon, diced
- Salt, to taste
- Pepper, to taste
- Boil potatoes until tender, about 10 minutes. Add carrot (and eggs if not yet hard-boiled) for the last 8 minutes.
- While cooking, sprinkle salt on the cucumber and onion and let them sweat for about 10 minutes.
- Remove potatoes and carrot (and eggs) and let cool. If necessary, cut egg whites into small chunks.
- Rinse cucumber and onion lightly and squeeze out excess water with paper towels.
- In a large bowl, add mayonnaise and all of the other ingredients and mix gently. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired.
- Serve as a side dish or as a sandwich filling.
You can leave the skin on the potatoes if you're using red potatoes.
As an option, you can include ham or Canadian bacon (not American bacon), which is especially desired when using it as a sandwich filling. Meat may be omitted if you are using it as banchan (side dish).
When making sandwiches from your potato salad, consider using toasted bread instead of plain bread—it will hold up better to this hearty, somewhat heavy mix.