When the hot weather hits, nothing is more cooling than a cucumber salad. Inspired by a fabulous cucumber salad shared with a friend at the Sea Salt restaurant in Berkeley, I canvassed my neighborhood grocers for some delicate Persian cucumbers. Have you ever eaten a Persian cucumber? Unlike the somewhat seedy American cucumbers with thick, bitter skins, Persian cucumbers are thin-skinned and practically seedless, so you can just slice them and eat them, without peeling. They can be hard to locate (even our local Iranian market didn’t have them), so you might try making this salad with English cucumbers which are also thin skinned and mostly seed-free. The combination of cucumber, mint, and feta cheese is really quite lovely.
Persian cucumbers, about 5 inches long
- 1 lb thin skinned, mild (non bitter) cucumbers, such as Persian, Armenian, or Japanese cucumbers, thinly sliced. You might also try it with English cucumbers.
- 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced and cut into 1-inch long segments
- 2 or 3 red radishes, thinly sliced
- 10 mint leaves, thinly sliced
- White vinegar
- Olive oil
- 1/4 pound feta cheese
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
In a medium sized bowl, gently toss together the sliced cucumbers, red onion, radishes, mint leaves with a little bit of white vinegar and olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. Right before serving, sprinkle on crumbled bits of feta cheese. Serve immediately. Serves 4.