Auntie Meliza’s Potato Salad

This is my favorite potato salad dish that my Auntie Meliza brings to all our family gatherings — even if it’s not a potluck!  My mom always referred to this potato salad as “Chinese-style” as it uses Spam® which is apparently known as “Chinese ham” to my people (which only included me very recently).  There’s also a bit of sesame oil and an additional of hot oil, which I do suppose is what my mom tends to add to everything when she cooks Chinese food.  I particularly love the addition of large, juicy shrimp folded into this creamy dish… I grew up on this dish and to me— potato salad isn’t potato salad without it!

For another use of “Chiense ham,” try Spam-ing it up with a classic Hawaiian treat: Spam Musubi!

Auntie Meliza’s Potato Salad


  • 6 large potatoes, peeled
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/2 (12oz) can of Spam® aka “Chinese ham”, cubed
  • 1/2 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 1/2 C mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 T vegetable oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • optional: scallions, chopped for garnish


First, we have to cook the potatoes, shrimp and hard boil the eggs.

Place the peeled potatoes in a large pot of water and bring to a boil.  Cook until tender for about 20-30 minutes (depending on size of potatoes) then drain and set aside to let cool.  When cooled, chop the potatoes into large cubes.

For cooking the shrimp, I would use the same boiled pot of water in order to not waste water.  Cook the peel and deveined shrimp over medium heat until fully pink and drain.

In a small pot, place eggs in a single layer and cover with cold water until covered by an inch.  Bring to a boil and then turn off the heat.  Cover and let sit on the burner for 10-15 minutes.  Remove the eggs, and place in cold water until cool.  Peel and chop up the hard boiled eggs into thick slices (or use an awesome egg slicer!).

Now that everything is cooked, it’s time to mix everything all together! 

In a large bowl, add the chopped potatoes, sliced eggs, cubed Spam, cooked shrimp (I leave whole, I do not chop these), mayonnaise, and sesame oil.  Gently mix all the ingredients together.

In a small skillet, heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil until smoking.  Add to the potato salad and season with salt and pepper to taste.  Optional: sprinkle with some chopped scallions for garnish and a crunchy texture.

Refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight before serving.

3 Responses to “Auntie Meliza’s Potato Salad”
  1. Send me a bowl. It’s so funny I never hear that Spam was called Chinese ham. I was in the supermarket the other day and they had a sale on Spam and I saw all the peopel coming out with cases of Spam. Live and learn. I have had Spam a few times and I enjoyed it..

  2. Harold says:

    Another great sounding dish!
    Check out Julia Child’s the perfect hard boiled egg. Works every time!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: