Cool Way with Cucumbers


I started making this very easy cucumber salad last summer when I had an absurd glut of overgrown Lebanese cucumbers. Every morning I’d be out in the back yard, gingerly peeling back the foliage to see how many more of these giant things were lurking, crying out to be picked after having grown about a foot overnight. Anyway, there’s really nothing to this dish – a Thai-inspired dressing used to marinate ribbons of cucumber (any kind is fine), and any other crunchy vegetables, if you fancy them. I’ve used green beans here. Radish, daikon, carrot would ll be good too.

Simply peel mountains of cucumber into ribbons – I keep the skin but discard the seeds down the centre. Squeeze out as much water as you can from the cucumber ribbons. You could leave them to drain in a sieve if you have the time, too. Then mix up a dressing of 2 parts lemon juice, 1 part fish sauce, with palm sugar and fresh red or green chilli to taste. You want quite a lot of dressing so as to marinate the cucumber. Pour dressing over cucumber in bowl and stir through, then let marinate and chill in the fridge for half an hour or so. Stir through some toasted sesame seeds before serving. I love this salad on the side of any barbecued meat or with a whole barbecued or steamed fish.


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