Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Recipe for Sweet and Sour Cucumber Salad with Fresh Dill

Sweet and Sour Cucumber Salad with Fresh Dill from KalynsKitchen.com
This salad is heavenly with fresh garden cucumbers!

So far I've only had one cucumber from my garden this year, but when I start getting lots of cucumbers this is just the type of salad I love for a summer side dish. It's a simple recipe that includes cucumbers, salt, white wine vinegar, Splenda or sugar, and black pepper, and then what bumps this up into the category of memorable cucumber salads is the addition of lots of fresh dill. I love dill, so I used even more than the recipe called for, but even if you think you're not that crazy about dill I'm begging you to try some in this salad. Another thing that makes this a great summer salad is that it's made in advance, and then chilled in the fridge for an hour (or longer) before serving. What are you waiting for? Get some cucumbers wherever you can, and make this salad!

I'd love to make this with garden cucumbers, but these European cucumbers from Costco were also great in the salad.

I sliced the cucumbers with this mandoline. (I got mine as a gift from a student about 5 years ago!) You can also slice with a knife but the mandoline is faster and makes nice even slices.

The recipe specified coarse ground kosher salt, but I think coarse ground sea salt would also work here. The salt is used to draw the water out of the cucumbers.

Put sliced cucumbers into a colander placed in the sink and sprinkle over 1 T coarse-ground salt, mixing it a bit with your fingers. Let sit 15 minutes.

While cucumber drain, wash the fresh dill, spin dry or dry with paper towels, then chop.

Mix together white wine vinegar, Splenda or sugar, and black pepper and then stir in the chopped dill. (I confess, I added a bit more dill after I took this photo!)

After 15 minutes, pat cucumbers dry with a paper towel. (The water that's released will wash off most of the salt.) Mix cucumbers with the dressing in a plastic bowl that has a tight-fitting lid (or use a ziploc bag.) Refrigerate cucumbers with dressing for an hour or longer, turning the bowl over a few times if you're around. Serve cold.

Sweet and Sour Cucumber Salad with Fresh Dill
(Makes 4-6 servings, recipe adapted slightly from Bon Appetit, July 2004.)

2 European cucumbers or 4 garden cucumbers, thinly sliced
1 T coarse grind kosher salt (or coarse grind sea salt)
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
3 T Stevia In the Raw Granulated Sweetener, Splenda or sugar (use Stevia or Splenda for South Beach Diet)
1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill (or more, I used about 1/2 cup)

Cut ends of cucumbers, but do not peel. Slice into thin slices. (I used a 3mm blade in the mandoline, but you can also thinly slice the cucumbers by hand.)

Put cucumbers in a colander placed in the sink and sprinkle with 1 T coarsely ground kosher salt. Mix it around a bit with your fingers so all the cucumbers have some salt on them. Let cucumbers sit and release water for 15 minutes.

While cucumbers drain, wash dill, spin dry or dry with paper towels, then finely chop. Combine white wine vinegar, sweetener of your choice, and fresh ground black pepper, then stir in the chopped dill.

After 15 minutes, pat cucumbers dry with paper towel. (Most of the salt should have been washed off by the water that was released.) Put cucumbers into a plastic bowl with a tight-fitting lid (or use a Ziploc bag.) Pour dressing over cucumbers and stir to combine. Refrigerate cucumbers with dressing for an hour or longer, turning the bowl over a few times if you're around. Serve cold.

This will keep in the fridge for a day or so, although I liked it best after just an hour in the fridge.

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South Beach Suggestions:
Cucumbers are a wonderfully low-glycemic food, and made with Splenda this salad would be a perfect side dish for any phase of the South Beach Diet. When it's hot outside, I'd eat this with something like Marinated Flank Steak or Rosemary Mustard Grilled Chicken.

More Cucumber Salads For Summer Menus
(Recipes from other blogs may not always be South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)
Cucumber and Radish Salad with Feta, Red Wine Vinegar, and Buttermilk Dressing from Kalyn's Kitchen
Garden Cucumber Salad with Tuna and Sweet Basil from Kalyn's Kitchen
Vegan Tomato Salad with Cucumbers, Avocado, Cilantro, and Lime from Kalyn's Kitchen
Greek Salad with Marinated Onions and Oregano from Kalyn's Kitchen
Spicy Chinese Cucumber Salad from Use Real Butter
Moroccan Cucumber Salad with Herbs and Olives from The Perfect Pantry
Mango, Cucumber, and Radish Salad from Cooking with Amy
Sichuan Cucumber Salad from Appetite for China
Thai Cucumber Salad from Cookin' Canuck
Cucumber Salad with Sesame from A Life (Time) of Cooking
(Want even more recipes? I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.)counter customizable free hit
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  1. Yum!

    I make a very similar salad. Slice cucumbers and white onions thinly. Combine equal parts water, vinegar (any flavour will do),splenda, salt and pepper. Pour over cukes and onion. Let sit in fridge for at least an hour. Gets better the longer it sits.

    I am going to throw dill into mine. What a great idea.

  2. Jan, I like the addition of onion too!

  3. I love simple cucumber salads like this. Although I've never been able to grow dill in my garden, whenever I find it at a farm stand I make half-sour pickles and cucumber salads. They really do taste better the longer they sit in the fridge.

  4. So many memories are flooding back. This is very similar to the salad my family likes to serve alongside a large piece of grilled salmon. Wonderful flavors!

  5. I love this salad, I have been making the same thing, but with plain white vinegar and liquid stevia. I will make sure to get the white wine vinegar on the next grocery run, thanks for the tip!

  6. I love dill with anything! This salad looks so refreshing and I too like the idea of adding some onions:). I am off to the farmers market in a few minutes so I may just have to pick up some cucumbers!!

  7. Lydia, wish I could give you some dill.

    Dara, this would be great with Salmon!

    Angie, I haven't tried liquid stevia, but it would be a good alternative for this.

    Dani, I'm a big dill fan too.

    Wendy, I'm not publishing your comment since it's not on topic for this post. In response to the questions, I read the South Beach book before I started the diet, so I can't think of anything I wish I had known. I really can't give you a grocery list, because there's no way for me to know what foods you like, but eggs are one thing that's a must for phase one. Good luck!

  8. Hello Kalyn! That cucumber salad looks so flavorful and refreshing. A great way to beat the summer heat down in here in Florida without heating up the stove for veggies. Thanks for the inspiration!

  9. If only my cucumbers were doing that well... I'd love to be eating this salad soon!

  10. sorry i was not on topic. i did try to find a "contact me link" for you but must have over looked or just didn't find one.
    sorry to be a bother.

  11. Lauren, it's hot here in Utah too; this is a great salad for hot weather.

    Cara, be patient with the cucumber. I've only had one from my garden so far.

    Wendy, no problem; I just figured the response is what you needed. (There is a box that says CONTACT Kalyn in the left sidebar.)

  12. We made a similar salad last week, but added red onion and feta. So light and refreshing for these hot days.

  13. I make a similar salad which includes sliced red onion, sliced orange or red pepper and finely chopped thai red chili pepper, sugar or splenda is omitted. Delicious SB friendly and a hit at the potluck bbq parties!

  14. Mmmm this is one of my favorite salads ever! Following a tip from my dad (since he's the chef in my family!) I make one small modification. When the cucumbers are in the colander, I weigh them down with another bowl, which really helps squeeze out every last bit of moisture before adding the dressing. I also cut the cucumbers as thin as possible, I think a little thinner than you based on your pictures. It's sooo good!

  15. Joanna, that's a great idea to put a weight on the cucumbers to get even more water out!

  16. This sounds perfectly fresh and flavorful! I love dill and have a few cucumbers in my garden waiting to be picked! Thanks for always providing healthy fresh recipes Kalyn!

  17. This sounds delicious! Cucmbers are super inexpensive at my produce market right now so I am trying tons of new recipes. I put another dill cucumber recipe up on my food blog today, a creamy Persian-style with yogurt. If you're interested, please feel free to visit http://dinnerwithsandi.blogspot.com/2010/08/cucumber-salad.html


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