Celebration Salad

Dec 12, 2019 | Recipes, Winter | 2 comments

Classic KOHAKU NAMASU, “red and white salad” is made from finely shredded daikon and carrots. Fruit peel is added after the vegetables have been salt-wilted and rinsed. The mixture is marinated in sweet-and-sour sauce for several hours to several days. Yuzu peel is often added as a garnish.

RED 紅 and WHITE are the colors of felicity; foods with these colors are served on happy occasions. Here carrots (both ordinary orange ones and crimson Kyoto reds) and snowy white daikon are the main ingredients; yuzu citron peel provides an accent, and garnish. This salad could appear on any celebratory menu, but it is always welcomed for OSHOGATSU, the Japanese New Year.

The salad’s tart-yet-sweet flavors and crisp texture pairs well with any broiled or skillet-seared foods, especially those prepared with soy sauce.

Kohaku Namasu Yuzu-Gama
(Red & White Salad in Yuzu Shell)

Although most often served from a large bowl, Kohaku Namasu can also be made into individual servings by mounding the salad in hollowed out lemon or yuzu shells. Place the scooped out fruit in sarashi (fine-woven cotton cloth used the traditional Japanese kitchen to strain stocks) or a double layer of cheesecloth. Bring up the edges over the fruit pulp to form a bag; hold over a cup or small bowl. Twist to squeeze juice from the pulp. Use this citrus juice in combination with, or in lieu of, vinegar when making your amazu (sweet-and-sour marinade).

DOWNLOAD recipe for Celebration Salad

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  1. crabtalk

    Made this salad for a weeknight dinner using what was readily available – coarsely grated Chinese radish (grenade-shaped, mild, with no biting heat – at least this one), grated carrot, and finely grated yuzu rind from one I’d grown that hardened when left in the fridge. Put the rind in the dressing to rehydrate, and finely julienned the kombu before adding to the salad. Next time, I’d reduce the sugar a tad. My only “quibble” is that there is no way this will serve 6-8 in our house – it barely served 2 because we both loved it so much! Thank you Elizabeth.

    • Elizabeth Andoh

      Glad to hear that the Celebration Salad was so well received! The recipes I provide here (and in my books) are meant to GUIDE people in their own kitchens. The balance between sweet and tart is both a personal choice and often a matter of what vinegar is being paired with the sweetener. It sounds like you found a good balance for your taste by tweaking the quantity of sugar. Regarding portion size: the quantities presume a Japanese meal with several small dishes being served together. No reason, though, why you can’t have more!

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