When the kind people at Marukan sent me some product samples a couple weeks ago, I had one dish in mind: Japanese cucumber salad, a.k.a. sunomono. I wanted to use their seasoned rice vinegar to streamline the salad — instead of adding sugar, salt, and vinegar, I’d use one convenient ingredient containing all three.
This salad has only four ingredients, and comes together in about ten minutes, or as fast as you can thinly slice a pound of cucumbers! It’s the perfect first course for a sushi dinner, or as a vegetable side with miso-marinated fish and steamed rice.
I’ve given classic sunomono a little twist by adding one of my favorite ingredients, hot sesame oil. This roasted sesame oil spiked with hot chili oil is meant to be used sparingly — just a few drops adds wonderful sesame aroma and a hint of heat.
Sesame Cucumber Salad
1 pound Persian cucumbers, sliced into thin rounds
3 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds
1/8 teaspoon hot sesame oil
1. Combine all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Let sit for at least 15 minutes before serving, allowing cucumbers to lightly pickle in the vinegar dressing.
Marukan rice vinegar was provided to me for review, free of charge. All opinions are my own.