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Chinese Spicy Cucumber Salad

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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Joined: 25 January 2010
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    Posted: 29 January 2010 at 13:50

Chinese Spicy Cucumber Salad Make Ahead

WOW THIS IS REALLY GOOD AND REALLY SUPER EASY!
SEE VMAN NOTES BELOW

Serves 4-6 as a Side Dish  
3 HOURS INACTIVE PREP TIME

2 Average Sized Cucumbers
3 Tsp Salt
2 TBSP Peanut Oil
8 Long dried Chilies or 16 Small Sichuanese chilies snipped into 1 ½” Pieces
2 Tsp Whole Sichuan Peppercorns
2 Tsp Sesame Oil

1) Cut the Cucumber into 2 ½” Sections. Quarter lengthwise, then remove the seeds and pulp, and then cut evenly into batons the size of French fries. Sprinkle w the Salt, mix well, and set aside for AT LEAST 30 minutes and preferably 2 Hours or more. Then Drain, and blot w a Paper Towel to remove as much water as possible. Pat the cucumber pieces dry.

2) Heat a wok over high heat until smoke rises. Add the peanut oil and swirl around to cover the base of the wok. Turn the heat down to a MEDIUM FLAME and add the chilies and peppercorns. Stir swiftly for a few seconds and are turning a darker red. Take great care not to burn the spices.

3) Add the cucumber pieces and stir and toss for about 10 seconds to coat them in the flavored oil. Remove from the heat, add the sesame oil and stir thoroughly before tipping the cucumber into a serving dish. The cucumber should not be cooked through, just swiftly heated so that it absorbs the flavor of the spices. Allow to cool before serving.

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VMAN’S NOTES: 

I used 4 Pickling Cukes from the Garden and ¾ of a Zucchini to try to keep the proportions half Cukes and Half Zucchini.
I Used Red Pepper Flakes ( about a pinch, maybe a little more)
I suppose I had about 8 – 10 Peppercorns in there.
I also used about 1 – ½ Tsp of Sesame Oil.

THIS WAS REALLY GOOD. It made about a cereal bowl full. I made Kung Pao Chicken the other night and served this as a side dish. It was a wonderful accompaniment to the Kung Pao. I gotta tell you it has some zip but is really tasty and VERY EASY to make. Here's my version:

Ingredients

5-6 Pickling Cucumbers (about 3-5" long & unwaxed)
1 Tsp Salt
2 TBSP Peanut Oil
1/2 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes ( more or less to your liking)
1 Tsp Whole Sichuan Peppercorns ( 8 - 10 peppercorns)
1 1/2 Tsp Sesame Oil

1) Quarter cucumbers lengthwise, then remove the seeds and pulp, and then cut evenly into batons (julienne) about 1/4" pieces. (FOR THE LONGER ONES cut the cucumbers into 2 1/2" pieces, then julienne). Place julienned pieces into a bowl. Sprinkle w the Salt, mix well, and set aside for AT LEAST 30 minutes and preferably 2 Hours or more. Then Drain, to remove as much water as possible. Pat the cucumber pieces dry w a paper towel.

2) Heat a lightly oiled cast iron skillet over high heat until smoke rises. Add the peanut oil and swirl around to cover the base of the skillet. Turn the heat down to a MEDIUM FLAME and add the chilies and peppercorns. Stir swiftly for a few seconds. The Oil will bubble around the chilies and peppercorns. The oil will infuse and the chilies will turn a darker red. Take great care not to burn the spices.

3) Add the cucumber pieces and stir and toss for about 10 - 30 seconds to coat them in the flavored oil. Remove from the heat, add the sesame oil and stir thoroughly before placing the cucumber into a serving dish. The cucumber should not be cooked through, just swiftly heated so that it absorbs the flavor of the spices. Allow to cool to room temperature before serving.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 April 2012 at 10:19
Although this is an older thread it caught my eye because we're planning on a Thai Crispy Cucumber Salad this week.
 
It's similar, but with some significant differences. This version comes from Linda Stephen's Complete Book of Thai Cooking. Obviously, I offer no opinion, yet, as to its taste:
 
Crispy Cucumber Salad
 
3 tbls lime juice or rice vinegar
2 tbls water
1 tbls fish sauce
2 tsp granulated sugar
1 large English cucumber, thinluy sliced
2 shallot, thinly sliced
1 1/2 tsp chopped freh red chilies
2 tbls chopped roasted peanuts
2 tbls fresh mint leaves
2 tbls fresh cilantro leaves
 
In a large bowl, whisk together lime juice, water, fish sauce and sugar until sugar dissolves.
 
Add cucumber, shallots and chilies. Toss together and let stand for 30 minutes.
 
Sprinkle with peanuts, mint, and cilantro
 
One modification I know we'll make: Far as this household is concerned there is nothing as tasteless as English cukes. So we'll use regular ones, salted and drained instead.
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