Cucumber Salad | It’s time to gear up for summer cookouts, picnics, and holidays. This time of year I like to have a few easy refreshing salad recipes on hand. It’s great in case you are invited to a spontaneous cookout or decided to host one yourself. And it doesn’t get easier than a cucumber salad. So, sun’s out cucumbers out.
I don’t know anyone that won’t eat a cucumber salad. Cucumbers are basically the chicken of vegetables in that everyone will eat a cucumber. Cucumbers have a clear cucumber taste but they are very versatile because they take on the flavors of the sauce they’re in.
I know the knee jerk reaction may be that cucumbers aren’t that interesting. They are basically a water vegetable log. But if you think about it cucumbers are used in cuisines throughout the world like Asian noodle salad, dainty cucumber sandwiches, refrigerator pickles, and tzatziki.
How to Sweat Cucumbers
No, I am not talking about taking your cucumbers out for a jog or strapping them to an elliptical. As I mention before cucumbers are a water vegetable and when used in salads they leach a lot of water. The best way to avoid a soggy wet cucumber salad is to sweat your cucumbers first. Sweating cucumbers simply means to draw out the water from the cucumber.
To sweat, cucumbers put the sliced or chopped cucumbers in a large colander over a bowl. Toss the cucumbers with a large pinch of salt and let sit for 20 minutes, then gently pat dry with a paper towel. The cucumbers will remain crisp and leach only a small amount of water in salads.
Cucumber Salad Recipe Ingredients
2 English cucumbers
1 red onion
1 sprig dill
1 sprig mint
1 sprig fresh oregano
2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
4 oz block feta cheese
For this recipe, I decided to add in some quickly marinated feta cheese. While I was sweating the cucumbers I also placed a half a block of feta cheese in the dressing to marinade. This gives the dressing a touch of creaminess and infused the flavor of the feta cheese into the dressing.
What is Feta Cheese
I love feta cheese! I would say it falls in the category of stinky cheese, but a good stinky. Its flavor is definitely tangy and salty which I believe it makes a great addition to bright summer salads.
Feta cheese is a Greek cheese. It’s a sheep’s milk cheese curd pressed into blocks and brined that can also be made from a mixture of sheep and goat’s milk. It is aged for a minimum of 3 months and has a crumbly and slightly grainy texture.
Cucumber salad is a great summer salad but with the abundance of produce during the summer the salad possibilities are endless. If you are a fan of fruit try my Summer Fruit Dinner Salad. If you love summer tomatoes you will love my Blistered Tomato Mozzarella and Arugula Salad.
Check out my salad recipe collection. Because I got all the salads.
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- 2 English cucumbers, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 1 sprig dill, leaves torn
- 1 sprig mint, leaves torn
- 1 sprig fresh oregano, leaves torn
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 4 oz block feta cheese
- kosher salt
- In a small bowl combine, red onion, fresh herbs, garlic, olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and vinegar. Toss until evenly combined. Add feta cheese block and coat with marinade. Set aside for 20 minutes to marinade.
- Place sliced cucumbers in a colander over a bowl, sprinkle the cucumbers with salt and toss. Set aside while feta marinades to allow water to drain.
- Spread cucumbers out on a layer of clean paper towels. Pat the cucumber dry. Remove feta from marinade. In a large bowl combine cucumbers and feta marinade. Toss until well combined.
- Crumble feta cheese over cucumber salad and garnish with fresh herbs if desired.
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- Benriner BN64B Mandoline Slicer, with with 4 Japanese Stainless Steel Blades, Beige
- Olive Oil Dispenser -2 Pack of 17 oz. Glass Bottles and Pourer Spout Set for Kitchen - Oil & Vinegar Cruet/Decanter with Funnel - Set of Two: Use One, Have One Ready On Standby
- Lipper International 1154 Acacia Round Flair Serving Bowl for Fruits or Salads, Large, 12" Diameter x 4.5" Height, Single Bowl