Cucumber Salad with Miso Sesame Dressing
Updated: Jan 12
Cucumbers don't have to be boring! If your veggie garden is similar to mine through the peak summertime harvest, then you have an abundance of cukes that you just can't stand to eat as a raw snack or as the usual hummus vessel for a snack break. Take note from a few unique Japanese ingredients and add some serious complexity to a chopped cucumber salad. Amplify their texture and crisp, refreshing flavor with intensely flavorful accompaniments...like miso, fresh lime, sesame oil, and toasted nuts. Serves 4
2 cucumbers halved, cut into 1/2 inch slices 1 lime cut in half
1/4 cup peanuts chopped
2 tsp sesame oil, divided
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, divided
1/2 tsp ground ginger, divided
1 tbsp miso paste
1 clove garlic grated
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
10 whole mint leaves
Set the oven at 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large mixing bowl, add the cucumber slices. Squeeze half of the lime on the cucumber slices, and toss to coat. Reserve the other lime half for the dressing. Place in the fridge, covered, until ready to dress and serve.
Place the peanuts on the lined baking sheet, and toss with 1 teaspoon of the sesame oil, 1/4 teaspoon of the cayenne pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon of the ground ginger. Stir to combine, and place in the oven for 6 minutes or until toasted and golden.
Meanwhile, prepare the dressing. In a small bowl, whisk together the miso paste, garlic, rice wine vinegar, juice from remaining lime, remaining sesame oil, cayenne, and ginger.
Whisk in the olive oil until the dressing is thick and is a smooth consistency. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
Remove the toasted peanuts from the oven, and allow to cool.
Transfer the cucumber slices to a serving dish, drizzle with the miso dressing, and garnish with the mint leaves and the toasted peanuts. Season with additional salt and pepper and serve.
*Miso Paste, made from fermented soybeans, the 'Red' version of this has an extra umami punch compared to it's relatives, Yellow and White Miso Paste.