Classic Cucumber Salad

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I remember versions of this from summer picnics when I was a little mouse. It’s one of the first things I love to make when the winter weather starts to break.

This salad is a cool and classic combination of sour cream and dill.

To prepare it, you soak the cuke slices in a little seasoned rice vinegar and kosher salt to draw out some of their water. This helps keep your cucumbers crisp and your salad from getting soggy.

What’s the difference between an English cucumber and a regular cuke?

Good question. English cucumbers, also called hothouse cucumbers, are longer than regular cucumbers and have far fewer seeds. In American markets, you generally find them sold individually and encased in plastic wrap.

How about that seasoned rice vinegar?

Oh, I love this stuff. Like the name implies, this rice vinegarhas been seasoned with a good balance of sugar and salt. My favorite brand is Marukan.

Marukan Seasoned Rice Wine Vinegar

If you don’t have any rice vinegar, you can also substitute red wine vinegar, or even white vinegar.

Classic Cucumber Salad

1 English cucumber (or 2 regular cukes, seeded)
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. seasoned rice wine vinegar
3/4 cup sour cream
1 Tbls. olive oil
juice of 1/2 a lemon
2 Tbls. fresh dill, chopped
more kosher salt, to taste, for the dressing
freshly cracked black pepper

Serves 3-4 as a side

Classic Cucumber Salad: Prep the cucumber

Slice your cuke into thin rounds. I use a sharp knife, but you can totally also use a mandolinor benriner. (Watch your fingers!)

Toss the cuke slices in a medium-sized bowl.

Drizzle with rice vinegar.

Sprinkle with 1 tsp. kosher salt.

Give them a toss to coat and combine.

Stick the bowl in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

Classic Cucumber Salad: Drain the cukes

After about a half an hour, grab the bowl out of the fridge. Tip it to the side. You should see that the cukes have let off a considerable amount of water. Drain all the extra water off and discard.

Give one a taste. It should taste like a really good, fresh and quick pickle.

Classic Cucumber Salad: Make the dressing

Put the sour cream and olive oil in another bowl.

Squeeze half a lemon over the bowl (pick out any seeds).

Add in your chopped dill.

Toss in a little kosher salt and crack on some fresh black pepper. Whisk to combine.

Classic Cucumber Salad: Finish the salad, serve, and enjoy!

Pour the dressing over the drained cukes.

Toss to combine.

Garnish with a little fresh dill.



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Jessie Cross is a cookbook author and creator of The Hungry Mouse, a monster online food blog w/500+ recipes. When she's not shopping for cheese or baking pies, Jessie works as an advertising copywriter in Boston. She lives in Salem, Massachusetts with her husband and two small, fluffy wolves.


  1. ooh, SO funny! I just bought a cucumber and some dill today to make Russian cucumber salad with a few extra ingredients (check back in a few days). your step by step is awesome as always :)
  2. I want to thank you for this. I have been looking forever for this recipe and could never find what I was looking for..I can't wait to make this for my family...
  3. Lime Cauliflower with Pine Nuts Another simple cold vegetable for summer: Cut a cauliflower into florets, and steam. Set aside to cool. Toast Pine Nuts to desired darkness. While the cauliflower is still warm, dress with fresh –squeezed lime juice and refrigerate. Sprinkle with toasted Pine Nuts just before serving.
  4. your presentation of making this salad is really so good.. here one salad recipe for you.. Black Bean Tomato Salad with Ginger 1.5 C Black Beans, rinsed & drained. 1 large tomato, seeded & diced. 1/2 small red onion, finely diced. Finely minced fresh ginger, to taste.° Juice of 1 lime. Olive Oil to dress. Freshly ground black pepper, to taste. ° if served immediately, use more ginger. If packed for lunch, use less.