Shrimp and cucumber salad with “Kimusu” egg yolk vinegar sauce 黄身酢の和え物

japanese cake

When I made shrimp balls (which required egg whites), I was left with two egg yolks. I was pondering how to use them. The yolks were from regular not from pasteurized eggs, so making mayonnaise was not feasible. Hollandaise sauce was another possibility but I settled for Japanese “Kimisu” 黄身酢 sauce. I have posted “kimisu” previously. That one came out a bit thinner than I wanted. This time, my kimisu sauce came out very thick and creamy. I made a small starter salad with shrimp, cucumber, wakame sea weed 若芽 and Campari tomato.

Since I had, tobiko roe とびこ I used it as a garnish on the top.

As you can see the kimisu sauce did not just run down the sides and had almost a soft mayo texture.

I used salt-preserved (not dried) wakame which tasted better.

Chef Kitayama of Sushi Taro told me that he froze the eggs he used for his sauce and then removed the egg yolks for kimisu to make a thick creamy texture. It was too late for that and, rather than winging it, I looked up recipes to accomplish thick and creamy kimisu sauce.  Among the many variations of recipes I settled on this recipe by a professional Japanese cooking teacher. He suggested to use a whisk and double boiler and whisk in air to make it creamy. In addition, the seasoning was slightly different from what I was doing. The original recipe used 3 egg yolks but I had only two. I had to make proportional changes in other ingredients to accomodate. I also reduced the sugar (my instinct told me otherwise it would be too sweet).

Ingredients (enough to dress 6 of these small salads):

Egg yolks, two

Rice vinegar 2/3 tbs

Mirin 2/3 tbs

Sugar 1 tsp

Light colored soy sauce  2/3 tbs

Dashi broth 1 1/3 tbs

Salt to taste


In the upper pan of a double boiler, I combined all the ingredients. When the water in the lower pan started boiling, I turned it down to simmer and put the upper pan over the boiling water and started whisking vigorously.  I occasionally removed the upper-pan to prevent the sauce from becoming scrambled eggs. After it started thickening, I kept it on the heat and kept whisking for two more minutes. I cut off the heat and kept whisking for another minute or two and let it cool down. After it cooled, I put the sauce in a small seal-able container and kept it in the refrigerator until I was ready to use it  (According to this recipe, it will keep 2-3 days refrigerated).

Shrimp: I thawed frozen shrimp, then cooked it by gently boiling it in salted water with a dash of sake for 2-3 minutes. I sliced the shrimp in two lengthwise and cut the resulting strips in half.

Cucumber: I used one American mini-cumber washed and salted, rolled on the cutting board and let stand for 10 minutes, then washed and dried using a paper towel and sliced thinly. I salted it and kneaded it and let it stand for another 10 minutes. I squeezed out the excess moisture and dressed the cucumber in sushi vinegar. I squeezed out the excess dressing before assembly.

Wakame seaweed: I used the “raw” salt preserved kind. I washed off the salt and soaked in filtered water for a few minutes. I squeezed out the excess moisture and dressed it in sushi vinegar.  Excess dressing squeezed out before assembly.

This was certainly a nice thick and creamy kimisu sauce. When I took it out of the refrigerator, the sauce was stiffer than I wanted it too be, so I added a small amount of broth and mixed it in to loosen it. In retrospect, I should have added more vinegar to loosen the sauce. I could have used a more assertive vinegar flavor in this sauce. In any case, using a whisk and introducing air made this kimuzu sauce very thick and creamy. The entire small salad tasted great.

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