Fresh, crisp cucumbers are perfect at any summer meal. They add texture and contrast when paired with grilled meats. This version can be served as a salad, or as a garnish, next to pretty much anything you’d throw on a grill.

Smashed cucumber salad with ginger

Smashed cucumber salad with ginger

Yield: 4

Letting the cucumbers drain is an important step, so it’s better to let this dish sit too long rather than not long enough. If you’ve got some fresh herbs kicking around, a few leaves of cilantro, chopped basil, or mint is a great addition.

Ingredients

  • 2.2 lbs thin-skinned cucumbers (about 10 small Persian cucumbers, or 2 large English cucumbers)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 1 1/2 tsp rice vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

Instructions

  1. Slice each cucumber in half lengthwise. Place the cut side down on the cutting board. Gently press each cucumber until they split and the seeds fall out. Remove the seeds and cut them into bite-sized chunks. Repeat with all the cucumbers, then toss with salt and sugar. Let sit in a colander to drain for at least 30 minutes, up to 4 hours.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together ginger, garlic, rice vinegar, sesame oil and soy sauce. When ready to serve, toss the drained cucumbers in the dressing, then toss with sesame seeds. Serve.

Notes

Sliced, seeded cucumbers

Cucumbers getting dressed