This cucumber salad is essentially a pickled vegetable dish. You can make a huge batch and keep a portion for another meal. While the cucumber slices will lose some of the crispness overnight in the fridge, the upside is that they will soak up the flavors of the dressing / pickling solution better.
Do try to get Japanese cucumbers for this dish. They are firmer and less watery. That makes them stay crisp longer.
Slice the cucumbers thinly, place in a mixing bowl, sprinkle in rock salt and toss thoroughly. Leave for about ten minutes to give the salt enough time to draw out the excess water from the cucumber.
While the salt is doing its job on the cucumber slices, make the dressing. Mix together sliced scallions, Korean chili flakes, toasted sesame seeds, grated ginger, salt, sugar and rice vinegar. Whisk everything together to make sure that the sugar and salt are completely dissolved.
Squeeze the salted cucumber slices and discard the liquid. Pour the dressing over them, toss thoroughly then leave for about half an hour to allow the flavors the develop. Serve as a side dish to just about any fried or grilled meat or seafood dish.
Korean-inspired spicy pickled cucumber salad
- 2 Japanese cucumbers thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon rock salt
- Place the sliced cucumbers in a bowl, add the salt and toss well. Set aside.
- Mix together all the ingredients for the dressing making sure that the sugar and salt are fully dissolved.
- Squeeze out the excess water from the cucumber slices.
- Place the squeezed cucumbers in a bowl, pour in the dressing and toss repeatedly until every slice is coated with the dressing.
- Leave the cucumber slices to soak in the dressing for at least half an hour before serving.