It seems we throw half the garden into our cuisine these days, and cucumber salad is no exception. Basil adds the perfect zest to this side dish.
We used pickling cucumbers in this but other types can be used as well. Picklers are multi-useful; good for both brined and canned pickles, and equally great for slicing raw into green salads, and of course for cucumber salad, and oh yes, cucumber sandwiches too!
Be sure to serve bread alongside this salad - the olive oil and rice vinegar dressing is a great dip for the bread after the cucumbers are dished out.
1 large or 2 small cucumbers, thinly sliced
1 tbsp salt
1/2 medium onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 medium sweet green pepper, diced
4 Tbs finely chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup brown rice vinegar (apple cider vinegar may be used instead)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Ground white pepper to taste (or black pepper)
Place the sliced cucumbers into a bowl and sprinkle with the salt. Add cold water to cover the cucumbers. Let soak for 20 - 30 minutes.
While the cucumbers are soaking combine oil, vinegar, onion, garlic, pepper, basil and ground white pepper in a bowl. Allow to stand for 15 minutes for the flavors of the herbs to infuse into the oil and vinegar.
Rinse the cucumber slices in cold water to remove the salt. Mix the cucumbers into the oil and vinegar mixture. Let sit for 10 minutes, then serve. -G.H.