Friday, February 4, 2011

#68 - Potato-Macaroni salad bento

Next on my review list is Hawai'i's bento box cookbook by Susan Yuen. It is my opinion that if you want to review a cookbook, you have to try at least 1 recipe from it. I will write the review in the next couple of weeks, since I want to try some more out of this book first. So look forward to a series of posts inspired by this book within the next couple of weeks! (This doesn't mean that every post I will make is about this book, but that I will try different things during the next weeks)

Today I tired the Potato Macaroni Salad recipe from page 131 of the book.(my adjusted version of the recipe below)

The large dinner bento contains: A large portion of the potato-macaroni salad, stir fried cauliflower, poffertjes (Dutch mini pancakes), clementine, risotto balls and cucumber slices.

The reason why I choose to make this recipe out of the book, was because I love both pasta and potato salad and combining the two sounded interesting. I did adjust some things to match my & BF's taste, and below is my version of this recipe. I have to say that I liked the spice combination of this recipe, however in my opinion the macaroni doesn't add anything. It is completely unnoticeable flavor wise because all the other ingredients taste stronger. So next time I will use just more potatoes, but try and taste for yourself:

For 6 small portions you need:
1 large potato, peeled and in small cubes
60 gram uncooked macaroni
60 gram of surimi, shredded (the original calls for 120gr, however the BF doesn't like it too fishy)
1 hard boiled egg
2 hands of frozen peas (the original had less, but I upped it)
mayonnaise (original uses 1/2 cup, but I don't use cups, I just added it gradually to taste)
1/4 tsp hondashi (Japanese bonito fish soup base)
some salt & pepper
1/2 tsp sugar (original was 1/4 but we like things sweet)

Cook the potato and the macaroni in separate pots, until soft. Drain it and let it cool completely. I always do this by running cold water over it. Combine everything in a large bowl and mix well. I added the mayonnaise last, in bits. I added some straight out of the bottle, mixed well and then taste if I liked it. So I have no idea how much I actually used. But just add it in parts until it tastes good to you. Then let it cool in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours before serving. You can add a bit more mayonnaise before serving if you think it is needed.

I will submit this post to the Hello Japan challenge from In Spring it is the Dawn, where the challenge for February is all about Japanese cooking! So this is the perfect challenge for us bento enthusiasts to join! It is a lot of fun and there is a price to win :) Hopefully I will see all your nice entries appear there!

And also in the Whip Up Something New challenge, where people share the new recipes they tried :)


  1. Potato and pasta combined in a salad sounds 'interesting' indeed..! Did it work for you, cooking the eggs & macaroni together?

    And it's nice to see you're joining in Hello Japan! and Whip Up Something New! as well! :)

  2. I tossed in the egg with the potatoes after washing the egg. It worked just fine :) Thanks again for that tip :)

  3. The first time I learned about bento lunches was when reading a beautiful Japanese book (Mistress Oriku), but I've never attempted to make one for myself. My husband is always complaining about the boring sandwiches he has in his meals, so I'll have to try this for something different! How long do you think this would stay good for? For example, if I cooked it on Sunday do you think we could still eat it for lunch on Monday or Tuesday?

    Thanks for sharing on Whip Up Something New!

  4. @ Trish: Yes you could easily do it that way. Keep it in a closed container though. I would recommend adding less mayonnaise before you store it and you add extra when you pack it for lunch. If your husband takes it with him, make sure it stays properly cooled. You can use an ice pack to do this :)

  5. I don't think I've ever had potato and pasta salad mixed together as one, but that sounds like a very Japanese thing to do. ;)
    Thanks for participating in Hello Japan!