Made with green onion, dill, sweet paprika, and a simple vinaigrette, this is the best cucumber salad you will ever have.
An exquisitely refreshing blend of green onion, dill, sweet paprika, and an easy yet delightful vinaigrette, this cucumber salad is set to be the best you've ever tasted. But why should you try it?
Why This Recipe Works
Eastern European Tradition. Firstly, it brings a delicious slice of Eastern European tradition right to your table. Hailing from Hungary, this recipe is also embraced by Germans and other Transylvanian communities.
It echoes the heritage and culinary practices of these ethnic groups, particularly with its clever use of paprika, a much-loved spice in the region.
Cherished family recipe. Passed down through generations, this salad is a summer staple that has been enjoyed by families for decades. The recipe has stood the test of time and has been relished alongside grilled meats, fried potatoes, and a mouthwatering schnitzel.
Easy to make and flavorful. The trick lies in preparing it at least half an hour before serving, letting the ingredients acquaint with each other to create a symphony of flavors.
Ingredients (and possible substitutions)
Cucumbers. Medium-sized, seedless summer cucumbers make the ideal choice for this salad. If the cucumbers contain seeds, simply remove them. Larger cucumbers work well, too, while the small ones are better reserved for pickles. English cucumbers can also be a delectable alternative.
Green onions. These little treasures are a wonderful addition in the summer, but in their absence, thinly sliced red or yellow onions work just as fine.
Dill. While fresh is the best, feel free to substitute the dill with dried, frozen, or other forms of preserved dill when fresh is unavailable.
I love good cucumbers in the summer, especially medium-sized and seedless ones. If they have seeds, I usually remove them.
Step 1. Cucumbers.
Start by cleaning and peeling the cucumbers, and then slice them paper-thin. The key here is in the thickness of the cucumber slices, allowing them to marinate efficiently in the dressing. A mandoline can make this task a breeze, but a knife will do just as well.
Step 2. Onions and dill.
As the cucumbers are draining, proceed to chop the onion and the fresh dill.
Step 3. Vinaigrette.
In a separate bowl, create the vinaigrette by whisking together vinegar, water, oil, salt, and a pinch of sugar. The sugar serves to harmonize the tartness of the vinegar and meld the flavors together.
In a salad bowl, combine the cucumbers and onions, drizzle over the vinaigrette, and gently toss. Add in the dill and give it another mix. Sprinkle the cucumbers with sweet paprika if desired, or you can opt to serve it as is.
Remember to let the salad rest for about half an hour before serving to allow the ingredients to marinate beautifully in the vinaigrette.
Storing the Salad
You can store this cucumber salad in the refrigerator for about two to three days. However, it's best to consume it within the first day for optimum freshness and flavor.
Serve and enjoy
Pair this marvelous cucumber salad with Chicken Schnitzel, Scalloped potatoes with hard boiled eggs, or with new potatoes adorned with dill and butter, or fried meatballs for a fulfilling summer meal.
It's a versatile side that compliments numerous dishes, which is why it's a recipe that you will find yourself returning to time and again.
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Best Cucumber Salad Recipe
For the salad:
- 3-4 medium cucumbers or 1 English cucumber sliced thin
- 2-3 green onions or 1 small red or white onion sliced
- 1 pinch of salt for cucumbers
- 1 small bunch of dill chopped or a handful
- ½ teaspoon sweet paprika
For the vinaigrette:
- 2-3 tablespoons white vinegar or apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup cold water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil like sunflower oil, olive oil
- Slice cucumbers very thin and place the slices with a pinch of salt on a colander to remove some of the water. Let them sit for 10-15 minutes.
- Squeeze the cucumbers to remove the water before placing them in a salad bowl.
- Meanwhile, slice the onions and the dill.
- Place the cucumbers in a salad bowl and add onion and dill.
Make the vinaigrette:
- Mix vinegar, water, oil, salt and sugar together and bathe the vegetables with it. Toss the cucumbers in the vinaigrette and let the salad marinate for about 25-30 minutes before serving.
- Ooptional sprinkle sweet paprika over the salad and serve.