Asian Pickled Cucumbers Three Ways – Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese

The end of Summer is upon us, and we have the last few remnants of vegetables from our garden to use up.  We found we had a straggling cucumber that had met its old age, and was ready to be put into our bellies.  Jax absolutely loves Taiwanese style pickled cucumbers, whereas I like spicy Korean style.  We had watched a show on TV that made Japanese style.  Our compromise?  Make them all!

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This is SUPER easy to do, and makes a great accompaniment to any meat dish, especially barbeque meats.
Ingredients:

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Japanese:

  • 2 English/4 Japanese cucumbers
  • .25 cup Rice Vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Salt
  • 2 tablespoons toasted Sesame Seeds

Korean:

  • 2 English/4 Japanese cucumbers
  • .25 cup thinly sliced Onions
  • 2 Chives
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Chili Flakes
  • 2 teaspoons Sesame Oil
  • 2 teaspoons toasted Sesame Seeds
  • 1 teaspoon Sugar

Taiwanese:

  • 2 English/4 Japanese cucumbers
  • 2 teaspoons Sugar
  • .5 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 tablespoon White Vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Sesame Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic, minced

Directions

Japanese:

Slice the cucumbers thinly.  I used a vegetable peeler to make them uniform.

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Sprinkle the salt over the cut pieces, and give it a stir.  Drain all of the excess water.  Using a strainer over a bowl works wonders.

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After 1-2 hours, they will be dried quite well.

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Throw all of the ingredients together, and mix well.  Place in a jar and refrigerate overnight.  That’s it!

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Korean:

Cut each cucumber in half, and then make diagonal slices.  Unlike the Japanese style, these do not need to be paper thin.

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Prep the garlic, chives, and onions.

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Once again, unlike the Japanese style cucumber dish, you do not need to drain the moisture.  Throw each ingredient into the bowl and give it a stir.

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Finally add each sauce, and mix well.

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No need to refrigerate these overnight — these are now ready to eat right away!  If you do wait 2 hours, the chili flakes will work their flavour into the cucumber, so be warned!  It will get hotter!

Taiwanese:

Smash the cucumbers, and the break with your hands.  Yes, you heard correctly.  I did this by using the wide, flat side of my chopper to smash, and then the rest broke apart easily.

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When you break it with your hand, a lot of moisture is released.

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Like the Japanese style, coat these with the sugar and salt, and put it in a strainer and let it drain for 1 to 2 hours.

When ready, mix the remaining ingredients together.

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Mince your garlic.  Jax likes hers with a little texture, so we just diced them instead.

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Throw ’em all together, and give it a mix.

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You can refrigerate these as well, which will bring out the flavour quite nicely.

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Ta da!  There you have it, Asian Pickled Cucumbers Three Ways — each with it’s own unique and distinctive flavour, and each SUPER simple to make!

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