Smashed Cucumber Salad


Smashed for an extra-crunchy bite, this salad is the perfect side to a spicy meal.


  • 4 small/2 large crunchy cucumbers

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1 tbsp sesame oil

  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce

  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar

  • 1 tsp sugar

  1. Wash and dry the cucumbers with a towel, then place on a cutting board. Using a flat knife or a large spoon and some body weight, push down on the cucumbers. They should crack into several pieces. Once sufficiently smashed, slice on an angle into bite-sized pieces.

  2. Scoop the slices into a strainer, sprinkle with salt, and toss to distribute. (Salting helps remove excess liquid, so the cucumbers end up extra-crisp). Set the strainer over a bowl and place in the fridge to chill. If you don’t have much time, fill a Ziploc bag with ice and set on top of the cucumbers for faster chilling.

  3. Make the dressing: Mix the sesame oil, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and sugar in a small bowl. Adjust seasoning to taste.

  4. Remove the chilled cucumbers from the fridge, shake out any excess liquid, and place in the bowl. Pour over half of the dressing and toss to evenly coat the cucumbers. Taste for seasoning, adding extra dressing if desired. Top with garnishes of choice and serve.

This recipe was featured in the weekly menu of Issue #6 of the Journey East Zine alongside:

Grace Kwan © 2020