Wasabi Mashed Potatoes

April 11, 2023
1 Ratings
Photo by Jun
  • Prep time 25 minutes
  • Cook time 30 minutes
  • Serves 4 to 6
Author Notes

Most of us know wasabi as the nose-tingling, sinus-tickling green wad served alongside sushi and sashimi. Outside of classic Japanese dishes though, the root vegetable rarely sees use.

That prompted me to think: What if we treat wasabi less like a sashimi slather, and more like a condiment? With its similarity in flavor to mustard and horseradish—coincidentally most commercial wasabi paste is actually made of horseradish—why not welcome wasabi as a part of the condiment club, and use it in sauces, dressings, rubs, and more?

So, as an experiment, I used wasabi in one of the simplest, most bare dishes to test whether its herbaceous piquancy could shine: mashed potatoes!

While there are many ways that lead to good mash, my go-to has always been the style of pomme purée popularized by Joël Robuchon, the late French chef who possessed the most Michelin stars in the world. In his recipe, he first boils or roasts his potatoes, then rices them into a smooth paste when they’re still steaming hot, before a big block of butter is churned into the mash (at least half the amount of butter to potatoes; some say more), along with some milk and salt to temper it. I followed his recipe nearly to a tee (though with a smaller chunk of butter), then added some wasabi powder and paste for that tingly heat.

And the verdict? It was surprisingly, ticklishly good. The wasabi added a most delightful background hint of heat, cutting through the rich butteriness of the mash that makes it ever more grand. If I didn’t know it was wasabi, I’d just assume I was having really balanced mashed potatoes, with a touch of mysterious, mustardy tang. All in all, a great success. —Jun

What You'll Need
  • 2 pounds large Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup whole milk, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon wasabi powder
  • 2 teaspoons wasabi paste, plus ½ teaspoon to garnish
  • Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
  1. Wash the potatoes thoroughly, scrubbing off any dirt and soil. Then put the potatoes into a large pot, and add water until the potatoes are completely covered. Add in 1 tablespoon of salt, and place the pot over high heat and bring it to a boil. Turn the heat down to medium, and let the potatoes simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, or until cooked through. (You can check their doneness by poking a paring knife into the potatoes. They are done when you feel little to no resistance to the knife going into the potatoes.)
  2. Remove the potatoes from the hot water. Peel the skin off the potatoes (they should come off easily), then immediately pass the potatoes through a ricer or fine mesh sieve.
  3. Transfer the mashed potatoes into a medium pot set over low heat. Then, add in the butter and stir until the butter is fully melted and combined with the mash.
  4. Add in milk, the remaining salt, wasabi powder, wasabi paste; stir to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning with more salt if needed.
  5. Transfer into a bowl. Give it a majestic swirl, then crack some black pepper over it to garnish, along with a wad of wasabi paste in the middle.

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1 Review

brushjl June 9, 2023
Fabulous! Not sure you need three sticks of butter, two (or one) would work, but the wasabi part was outstanding.