Friday, July 31, 2009

Asian Style Cucumber Salad

This cucumber salad is my version of one a Korean friend of mine made when we were in college (almost 30 years ago). I never asked her for the recipe, I made this from memory so it may be a conglomeration of many of the Asian dishes I have had since college. Either way, it tastes good. This looks very similar to my zucchini salad from this morning, but tastes nothing like it.

The cucumbers are a little spicy from the chili garlic sauce. The salad is too spicy for little children, but it should be fine for most adults. If you don’t like a lot of heat you can always start with half the amount of the chili garlic sauce and taste to see if the heat level is good for you. I think I like spice and heat more than most people. I added fresh garlic because I put garlic in almost everything (that is what Italians do, even those of us that aren’t 100%). Garlic is such a healthy food for everything from cancer to heart disease that I think we should eat it everyday. The sesame seeds were added for texture so you could leave them out if you prefer.

Asian Style Cucumber Salad
Serves 2


2 tablespoons of rice wine vinegar or distilled white vinegar
1 tablespoon of chili garlic sauce (on the Asian aisle in the grocery store)
1 clove of garlic, grated or finely minced
1 teaspoon of liquid aminos or low sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon of sesame seed oil (the toasted version has more flavor)
1 scoop of stevia powder (1 gram) or agave
2 seedless cucumbers, halved and sliced as thinly as you can
a few thin slices of red onion (about ¼ cup)
1 tablespoon of sesame seeds - optional


Whisk together the dressing ingredients (rice wine vinegar, chili garlic sauce, garlic, liquid aminos, sesame seed oil and stevia). Taste the dressing for seasoning. I tend to like my sauce a little less sweet; you may want more sweetener in your version.

Toss the cucumbers and onions into the sauce and refrigerate until ready to serve. Sprinkle with the toasted sesame seeds and serve cold.

Nutritional Information:

Amount Per Serving
Calories - 84.8
Calories From Fat (27%) - 22.47

Total Fat - 3.37g
Saturated Fat - 0.54g
Cholesterol - 0mg
Sodium - 340.56mg
Potassium - 562.65mg
Total Carbohydrates - 20.14g
Fiber - 2.03g
Sugar - 5.05g
Protein - 2.52g


This is great to accompany any kind of Asian food. I like to serve it when we have bibimbap or stir-fry. It is also good on a roasted vegetable sandwich with hummus. It is also good served on greens as a salad, or you could serve it on top of seitan or tofu as a relish. It looks pretty with fresh cilantro but I didn’t have any today. This salad works well with almost any Asian dish.

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