You can make my Homemade Japanese Mayonnaise or modify American mayonnaise with Mizkan Natural Rice Vinegar and sugar. For 4 Tbsp of American mayonnaise (I use Best Foods/Hellmann’s Mayonnaise), add ½ Tbsp rice vinegar and ¾ tsp sugar. Whisk until sugar dissolves.
To Boil Macaroni
Start boiling 3 quarts (12 cups, 2.8 L) water in a large pot (I used a 3.5 QT pot). Once boiling, add 1 Tbsp salt and macaroni. Cook according to the package instructions plus 1 minute more.
Drain the macaroni and transfer to a large bowl. While hot, add 2 tsp olive oil.
Add 1 Tbsp rice vinegar and 1 tsp sugar and mix well together. Set aside to let cool completely.
To Make Boiled Egg
In a medium saucepan, add water that covers 1 large egg and bring it to a boil over medium heat. Optional Tip: If you want your egg yolk to be in the center, gently rotate the eggs with chopsticks once in a while for the first 3 minutes so the egg yolk will be in the center.
Once boiling, turn the heat down to medium-low and set a timer for 12 minutes (9 minutes for soft boiled egg). Once it’s done cooking, bring the pot under running water to cool or immediately transfer to an iced bath.
Peel the egg and cut it into small pieces.
To Prepare Vegetables
Cut off the ends and peel the onion. Cut into thin slices along the grain.
Peel the cucumber skin, leaving some part unpeeled (so it looks nice) and cut off the ends.
Thinly slice the cucumber (or use a mandolin). Put the sliced cucumber and onion in a medium bowl.
Sprinkle 1 tsp salt and lightly massage with hand to evenly distribute the salt. Set aside for 5 minutes.
When you see the liquid in the bowl, give the sliced vegetables a quick rinse to remove the salt.
Squeeze water out and set aside.
Cut the ham into small pieces, roughly ⅛ inch thick, 2 inch long pieces and set aside.
To Assemble Macaroni Salad
When the macaroni is cool, add the ham and sliced cucumber and onion.
Mix well together and add the chopped boiled egg.
Add 4 Tbsp Japanese mayonnaise and ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper. Mix all together.
Taste the salad and see if you want to add more salt, pepper, or mayonnaise. Once the taste is good, chill the salad for 1 hour in the refrigerator before serving.
You can keep the Japanese Macaroni Salad for up to 2-3 days in the refrigerator.