Summer harvest time for many gardeners can mean an overload of fresh veggies – including cucumbers. Once pickle making and fresh eats have worn out their welcome, one can get desperate for other ideas. After all, a person can only make so many pickles and creamed cucumber salads!
In an effort to do something different for a recent potluck I came up with a delightful asian, almost Thai style, cucumber salad. My taste-tester husband enjoyed it so much he was hoping to take home leftovers so he could have them for his lunch box!
- 6-8 cups fresh cubed cucumbers
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro (chopped fine)
- 1/4 cup fresh basil (chopped fine)
- 3 jalapeños (seeded, sliced thinly)
- 3 carrots (julienned)
- 6 Tbsp white vinegar
- 4 Tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp lime juice
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1 Tbsp peanut butter
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 1 pinch of crushed red pepper flake
Sprinkle On Top
- 1 Tbsp sesame seeds
Don’t be afraid to play with this recipe. Whisk together the dressing ingredients. Adjust the sugar, salt and vinegar until it makes your mouth happy! As far as the other ingredients, I used the veggies & herbs I had in my garden.
If you don’t like spice, omit what you don’t like or add whatever else you have available. For instance, I used 3 jalapeños because they didn’t have any heat to them this year. Also, the first time I made this salad I cheated and used a prepared Toasted Sesame Salad Dressing from the grocery store. Be adventurous!
Depending on how juicy your cucumbers are, I would not combine the dressing until the moment you pack up to go to the potluck. Cucumbers can easily get soggy and lose water resulting in a sloppy, weak flavored dressing. To make it easy, just prep the veggies the night prior and mix the dressing in a separate small container.
For added flavor and flare, consider the following additions:
- Sliced almonds
- crunched up Ramen noodle
- add a Ramen seasoning packet to your dressing instead of salt
- dried cranberries or raisins
- sunflower seeds
- crispy wonton strips
- red peppers/orange peppers/green peppers
- crispy bacon bits