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Yes, I know I did not need another Asian-inspired cucumber salad on here, but we’ve got cucumbers coming out of the greenhouse at a rate of knots, and this one I find is lighter, and much nuttier thanks to the generous addition of sesame than the Chinese version, and much better suited to serve alongside some sort of meat or other protein, rather than as a separate small plate.
I’ve used my recipe for kimchee-like Korean cucumber pickles in One Pan Pescatarian(ad) as a template, though this is essentially the traditional spicy Korean cucumber salad – Oi Muchim – without the addition of soy sauce, which I chose to leave out to make this salad a different creature to the Chinese-style one I’ve linked above. For me, toasted sesame oil is as much a dominant Korean flavour as kimchee and gochujang, so I really wanted to give it a chance to sing.
Add the cucumber to the bowl and toss well with the dressing.
Top, tail and slice the spring onions on the diagonal.
Transfer the cucumber and its dressing to a serving dish and scatter the sliced spring onions and sesame seeds over the top. Finish with a little more sea salt before serving.
Gochugaru is a Korean red pepper powder / dried chilli flakes that usually come in a clear, red topped canister. You can find them at the Asian supermarket or order them on Amazon (ad). You’ll miss out on some of the signature Korean flavour, but Pul Bieber / Aleppo chilli flakes will do in a pinch.
You might need to add a little more salt and sugar to taste to your marinade if you use Chinese rice wine vinegar which is unseasoned, rather than the seasoned Japanese version specified, but the substitution is still acceptable.
I'm a food writer living in London and the English Countryside. Welcome to my online diary where I share easy, weeknight recipes, foodie travel diaries and some of the best places I've eaten out recently.
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One Pan Pescatarian: 100 Delicious Dinners – Veggie, Vegan, Fish
My second cookbook contains 100 delicious dinner recipes, all of which are either vegetarian, vegan or which celebrate fish and seafood - all cooked in either one pot or one pan.*