Recipe: $6.85 | Per Serving: $0.86 | Yield: 8
This cucumber salad is everything you want in a super simple summer salad. Two types of vegetables and a flavorful dressing made from easy ingredients. No blender, no shredded carrots or cashew cream dressing, no sugar, and just enough salt to keep it interesting. This my friends, is the king of side salads: Awesome Cucumber Salad with Sesame Dressing.
Inspired by / stolen from my good friend Branko, who made a similar salad for us in Japan. Usually I’m the salad-maker & eater among everyone I know, but one Sunday evening we were drinking Japanese beer & whiskey, watching YouTube videos on TV (as we tend to do), and eating wasabi chips & popcorn. We all realized we’d breezed right through dinner and ought to eat something besides junk. 10 minutes later Branko had whipped up this delicious on-the-fly salad with flavorful sesame dressing and thinly sliced cucumbers. We scarfed it down and he filled me in on the ingredients, but admitted to not having a clue of the ratio between them, so I was on my own.
Fast forward almost a year later and I brought this version to a work potluck and it was a hit – my super picky vegetable-hating coworkers even enjoyed it, and two teachers asked for the recipe. That’s when I knew it was destined for the blog. I’ve played around with the ratios of vinegar & soy sauce a few times, and I’m super happy with this version. Feel free to taste & adjust to your preference! For those of you looking to make a larger or smaller version, here’s the ratio = sesame:rice vinegar:soy sauce is 6:2:1, plus just a dash of salt. Also, you can definitely skip the soy sauce if you want, but I think it adds a little extra oomph.
I have such a soft spot in my soul for a simple salad dressing, and this one really fits the bill. I hope you shake up this dressing for your dinners this week! You won’t regret it. And if you’re feeling fancy, go ahead and top it with Simple Seared Salmon (recipe coming on Thursday).
Paleo: Omit the soy sauce, or replace it with coconut aminos.
Vegetarian: Heck yes!
- 1 cucumber (I like thin-skinned English & hothouse cucumbers best)
- 16 ounces salad greens (lettuce, mixed greens, baby spinach, arugula, etc.)
- 6 teaspoons (2T) sesame oil (toasted has more flavor!)
- 2 teaspoons rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- Wash the greens and set them aside to drain. (I use a salad spinner - one of my favorite kitchen tools!)
- Using a sharp knife or a mandoline, thinly slice the cucumber. Think thing thoughts here, because you want it as thin as you can get it.
- In a jar, combine the remaining ingredients: sesame oil, rice vinegar, soy sauce, and salt. Shake until well mixed.
- Build your salad: combine the greens, cucumbers, and salad dressing until evenly distributed. Optional: top with sesame seeds or sliced green onions. Serve!