Traditionally, Chinese cucumber salad is made by heating cucumbers in a spicy mixture of sesame oil, chili peppers, and Szechuan peppercorns. In this quick and easy recipe for cucumber salad, cucumbers are tossed in a red wine vinegar dressing spiked with minced ginger and chili flakes.
Note: If you find the sesame flavor a little too strong, reduce it to 1 teaspoon.
- 5 Pickling cucumbers (about 1 1/4 pounds)
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon light Chinese soy sauce
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil
- 2 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root, or to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
- Cut the ends off the pickling cucumbers. Cut in half, then lengthwise into quarters, and into strips about the width of French fries.
- Place the cucumber strips in a colander and sprinkle the salt over. Let the cucumbers sit for 30 minutes. Note: I find that weighing down the cucumbers during salting so they release more water keeps them crisp and helps prevent a watery dressing from collecting at the bottom of the bowl. I used 2 resealable plastic bags about 3/4 full with water; you can also use a saucer. Pat dry with paper towels to remove the excess water.
- While the cucumbers are desalting, make up the dressing: Whisk together the red wine vinegar, soy sauce, Asian sesame oil, brown sugar, fresh ginger root, and red pepper flakes.
- Lay out the cucumber strips in a dish and pour the dressing over. Cover with plastic wrap and chill the cucumbers for 4 hours or overnight. Serve the cucumber salad cold.
|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Total Fat||2 g|
|Saturated Fat||0 g|
|Unsaturated Fat||1 g|
|Dietary Fiber||1 g|