Chinese smashed cucumber salad with garlic, vinegar and sesame oil. This is one of the most popular homemade cold dishes in China, which only requires 5 minutes from preparation to table.
Cucumber is really great for summer. The cool and crispy taste can help us against the hot weather. There are many cold dishes in China which equals to salad in western centuries for example Chinese cabbage salad, cucumber salads, spicy chickens salad.
Usually Elaine has two ways of making easy Chinese cucumber salad: one is to smash it directly before mixing and the other one is to pickle the cucumber slices for 1 or 2 hours. Smashed cucumber can absorb more sauce within the cucumber, as a result, having a compound and uniform taste. However pickled cucumber salad has two layers of taste. The first is the combined sauce, succeeded with a crispy and freshness from the cucumber slices. I strong recommend you trying both ways if you love cucumber salad the same as me. Following is the photo of spicy pickled cucumber salad.
For the cucumber, pick fresh ones and just peel the think skin off and remain some thin skins, which can help to add some extra green color and also make the smashed cucumber crisper. If you really do not like the skin, you can peel them all off. Do remember to cut the two ends off.
Smash the cucumber and then cut into small pieces casually. And then marinate with the sauce. The garlic sauce I introduced today is the most basic and mild version. For a spicy version, you can add some chili oil or add some chopped fresh thai chili peppers.
Other recommended Chinese style salad for hot summer
- wood ear mushroom salad–the spicy and sour version I love the most.
- Bean thread noodles salad with carrots and spinach–a healthy vegan salad
- Sichuan style eggplant salad with fresh chilis
Chinese style smashed cucumber salad
- 1 fresh English cucumber (or two smaller ones, around 350g)
- 3 garlic cloves, mashed
- 1 tablespoon black vinegar
- 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
- salt to taste
- chili oil to taste (1/2 tablespoon recommended)
- Wash the cucumber and peel off tough skins.
- Remove the two ends and smash with a wide kitchen knife (like Chinese slicing knife) until the cucumber is well crushed. Then cut into one bite pieces.
- Transfer all cucumber cubes into a bowl. Mix well with mashed garlic and other sauces.
- Serve immediately.
For very tender and young cucumber, you can keep most of the skins.
Summer is not easy and wish everyone happy cooking!