For those of you who follow me on Instagram you have probably noticed the disproportionate amount of meat consumed in our home! That’s not to say we don’t eat plenty of veg or fish too. For whatever reason, I end up photographing more of the meat-based dishes! So on that note, something a little healthier coming out of AnotherFoodBloggers kitchen today. I give you my smashed cucumber salad!
Speaking of healthy - I recently discovered an EPIC new source of energy, nope it wasn't getting rid of the toddler! It came in the fashion of a simple juice taken each morning. What am I talking about? Read this article - and see for yourself! Trust me - it's worth investigating.
Why I Love Smashed Cucumber Salad
Simplicity. It looks fancy as can be but this dish is so simple to make - in fact I whipped up the majority of it while Little Miss AnotherFoodBlogger was tucking into her beef cheek ragu.
The salad offers a GREAT balance of fresh, spicy, sweet & umami from the miso dressing. It works really well on it's own or with grilled meats. And let's face it - it looks pretty damn good too 😉
Making Smashed Cucumber Salad
This delicious smashed cucumber salad is such a quick and easy dish to make. It's defo very green in colour but trust me it still packs a whoe load of flavour so don't be put off by the greenness!
Slice the cucumber in half and then into edges. Turn them cut side down and give them a bash. Toss in 1 tsp of salt & sugar and let them hang out on a sieve over a bowl for an hour or so in the fridge. What's the purpose of this? It draws out a lot of the moisture from the cucumber. The salt/sugar mix also means you aren't dining on too salty or sweet a cucumber.
Next all you need to do is boil some green beans and cool them in ice cold water so they are still crispy and chop up some onions. The dressing couldn't be any easier than just whisking everythng together.
In fact, the beauty of this cucumber salad is you can make all the ingredients in advance and just toss them all together when dinner is ready or your guests arrive!
What to eat with smashed cucumber salad?
The truth is you don't need anything else - this cucumber salad is delicious in it's own right. BUT, if like me you are partial to some meat on your table I would recommend anything grilled. It works great with steak, grilled chicken thighs, satay chicken skewers (see pic) or even some delicious pork kebabs too (see wine pairing pic). The cucumber salad is simple to make, pleasing on the eye and pretty cost effective too. Great for a spring/summer BBQ.
AnotherFoodBlogger's life has been pretty hectic of late with a trip home to Ireland. I tell you 24hrs on a plane with a 2yr old makes the trip a touch different! There have been a few catering gigs going on and house moving which is ALWAYS fun. Oh, and the biggest curveball was daycare being closed for nearly 4 months. So cooking was kinda put on the back burner while myself & princess spent TONS of time exploring Bris-Vegas parks - joys!! But all that being said, life is somewhat back to normality so stay tuned for more recipes coming your way.
I love Asian influence in food, ever since my trip to Vietnam, Cambodia & Laos many years ago when I fell in love with that style of food. Now, I’m no Asian chef nor am I at the level of the chefs cooking the food I devoured there daily. Over time I feel I’ve learned to add Asian influence into many of my dishes in a good way. This smashed cucumber salad is the perfect example of that with great freshness from the herbs & cucumber, nuttiness from the sesame & miso, acid from the vinegar & citrus and spice from the garlic, ginger & chili flakes. It really is an absolute winner.
If like me you have a well-stocked pantry. Something you have definitely heard me discussing before, then most of these ingredients already sit on the shelf just itching to be used! Put this smashed cucumber salad down in the middle of the table for a family-style dinner, bbq or serve it alongside some meat. I can’t imagine even the largest of meat-eater turning up his or her nose at it!
What do you pair with a light, refreshing, Asian influenced delicious smashed cucumber salad? Riesling my friend, riesling. My latest drop that I picked up from Dan at winedirect.com.au is the delicious Kirrihill 'Gleeson & co' 2018 Riesling from the Clare Valley. A drop that is drinking perfectly right now but I can see getting even more perfect over the next 10 years too. Anyone else like aged Riesling?
Tons of zippy acidity and delicious lemon and lime notes on both the nose and palate. Nice minerality to the wine with great length. This is one even the discerning palate of Mrs AnotherFoodBlogger loved and accompanied by my deliciously simple smashed cucumber salad and some grilled pork kebabs a great night was had!
Alternative Salad Options
Check out these delicious salads if you are looking for some great recipes for BBQ's and meals with friends/family.
Happy Cooking and Happy Eating Friends!
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1.5 cucumbers
- 3 spring onions sliced thinly at an angle
- 2 handfuls green beans
- chili flakes
- sesame seeds
- 1 handful mint leaves torn
- 1 handful coriander incl some stems torn
- 2 tbsp white miso paste
- 2 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 lime juiced
- 1 tsp garlic puree
- 1 tsp ginger puree
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Wash cucumber and cut into 1/2 lengthways and then into 5 equal sized pieces.
- Place cucumber flesh side down and smash with back of knife until seeds are released and skin has cracked. Cut/break into bite size pieces.
- Toss cucumber in 1 teaspoon salt & 1 teaspoon sugar and leave to drain in sieve in fridge for at least 30mins but up to 4hrs.
- Cook green beans for 1 minute in boiling water and chill immediately .
- Add cucumber, green beans, spring onions, sesame seeds, chili flakes & herbs to salad bowl & toss to combine.
- Make dressing by whisking all ingredients together.
- Add 1 tbsp dressing to cucumber mix and toss adding more dressing as you feel necessary. *see tip*
- Top with some sesame seeds & chili flakes.
- chopping board
- sharp knive
- measuring spoons
- mixing bowls x 2
- bowl with ice cold water
- boiling the green beans and placing immediately in iced water is called blanching or refreshing. This stops the beans from cooking and helps retain their bright green colour
- i used about 90% of the dressing in my version but when cooking and adding sauces/dressing it’s always best to add a little at a time and taste as you go to find your preferred amount
- adding the salt to the cucumbers helps draw moisture from them which helps in the dressing of the salad later. The sugar helps to balance it out so it’s not overly salty