Japanese love mayonnaise. They bake it on toast, on pizza, toss it straight up with sliced cabbage, and mix it with mentaiko (spicy cod roe). Here, it’s combined with shoyu and wasabi, poured over sliced avocados and tomatoes, and baked. Maybe it sounds strange, but I was immediately drawn to this recipe.
Part of the draw was because I was surprised to see this recipe in a widely circulated Japanese cooking magazine. While visiting my relatives in Hiratsuka back in the early to mid-90s, my mom made California rolls for the family. Avocados had not yet been introduced to Japan and everyone seemed to agree that avocados were a bit… strange and not to their liking. This particular American invention didn’t do well then, but avocados has since been widely used and accepted.
This dish is assembles fast so it’s perfect when you need a simple, but unique and tasty side dish. I think a tomato on the sweet side would be good to balance the saltiness of the sauce and the creamy avocado. I loved the hint of wasabi, but feel free to omit. Eat it topped on a slice of toast or over hot rice.
squeeze of lemon
1 Tbsp panko
2 Tbsp mayonnaise
1½ tsp shoyu
½ tsp neri wasabi (in a tube)
Cut the avocado in half lengthwise and cut lengthwise into 6–7mm thick slices. Sprinkle with lemon juice. Cut the tomato in half lengthwise and cut crosswise into 6–7mm thick slices.
In a small bowl, whisk together the sauce ingredients.
In a small baking dish (I used 2 small gratin dishes), alternate the avocado and tomato slices. Top with sauce and sprinkle with panko. Bake at 500ºF for about 10–15 mins. I used a toaster oven, so times may vary. Keep a close eye and remove from the oven when the panko turns golden brown.