Cultured Cucumbers: Dishes From Around The World

Some vegetables are loved regionally, some are loved seasonally, but only a select few are loved universally. Cucumbers are indisputably the latter. Famous for their crisp texture and adaptability, you can find cucumbers on plates in every corner on earth. Journey with us as we shine a light on some of our favorites.

Chengdu

The capital city of the Sichaun province in China is the birthplace of Szechuan cuisine. Vegetable side dishes are often served in between courses in order to serve as light palate cleansers. Szechuan style cucumbers are smashed and served in a mixture of vinegar, garlic, and other seasonings.

  • Fun Fact: Smashing your cucumbers allows them to absorb the vinegar flavor much faster.

Aleppo

Hailing from Syria, the Aleppo pepper is a heavyweight across middle-eastern cuisines. Its approachable heat pairs wonderfully with the refreshing flavor of cucumber, and the two are often combined in Aleppo Dill Pickles. Add garlic and red pepper flakes into your brine for a spicy pickle that can amp up simple sandwiches.

Athens

Long lasting and world-famous, the Greeks have been making tzatziki sauce since the time of the Ottoman empire. Both a condiment and a dip, this cucumber and yogurt sauce compliments both beef and chicken.

Seoul

Tangy without sacrificing heat, Oi Muchim is a popular spicy cucumber dish in South Korea. A combination of hot pepper flakes, sesame seeds, vinegar, and a variety of seasonings, Oi Muchim can serve as a side or as part of a larger dish. For a truly authentic dish, be sure to use Korean cucumbers. If you can’t get your hands on any, crisp, lightly-seeded cucumbers will do the trick.

Mexico City

Appealing to both kids and adults, Pepinos con Chile y Limon are a common snack throughout Mexico. To prepare, simply squeeze fresh lime juice on your cucumbers and top with Mexican chili powder. Occasionally combined with fresh jicama, this dish is a great way to cool off on a hot summer’s day.