Smashed Cucumber Salad, Chinese Style

Smashed Cucumber Salad, Chinese Style

Refreshing, surprising, and oh so good; it’s a perfect side dish with steaks, burgers, pork and poultry.


Chili Oil

  • 5 cloves garlic, minced or microplaned
  • 2 T ginger, minced
  • 3 t regular red pepper flakes
  • 5 T gochugaru Korean pepper flakes
  • 2 t Kosher Salt
  • 1 cup vegetable oil

For the salad

  • 2 lbs Persian cucumbers
  • 3 t Kosher salt
  • 4 cloves garlic, grated
  • 4 T seasoned rice vinegar
  • 4 T soy sauce
  • 4 T prepared Chili Oil (above)
  • 3 t light brown sugar
  • 4 t toasted sesame oil
  • Black Sesame Seeds


  1. Make your Chili Oil a couple of days ahead.
  2. Into a metal bowl, put all ingredients except the oil.
  3. Heat the oil to 300°, no higher.
  4. Pour the oil over the spices, stir gently, and let sit for at least an hour.
  5. Before you start your cucumbers, take the garlic and mix with rice vinegar, and let sit for 30 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, trim your cukes, slice them lengthwise, and then smack them with the flat of your knife.
  7. Cut them into diagonal ½” slices and put them into a bowl. 
  8. Toss the cukes with the salt and let sit for 30 minutes to release moisture. Drain the cukes and return them to the bowl.
  9. To the garlic/vinegar mixture, whisk in the soy, your chili oil with all the spices, sugar, and sesame oil.
  10. When you are ready to serve, toss everything together and sprinkle with black sesame seeds.

chef lydia demonstrates her cooking skills
The Chef
DeBragga's Corporate Chef - Lydia Liebchen