Cucumber and Wakame Salad

Cucumber and wakame salad is one of the most beloved starters in Japan. The recipe usually calls for simple vinegar dressing but I like to use mayo instead.

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Refreshing and crisp, this is a great summer appetizer.

Ingredients
Two seedless cucumbers such as Persian or East Asian
Wasabi, 1 tsp or as much as you want.
Mayonnaise, 1 – 2 tbs
Dried wamake seaweed, 2 tbs (5g)
Soy sauce, 1 ts
Salt

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What is Wakame?
You may have seen deep green, fluttery things swimming in a bowl of miso soup at a sushi restaurant. That is wakame seaweed. Its health benefits are great yet it is extremely low in calories.

In the U.S., you can find dried wakame at a Japanese grocery store, an organic food store or online.

Dried wakame expands significantly when rehydrated so fill a bowl with sufficient amount of water and soak until softened. It usually takes 5 to 10 minutes.

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When soft, drain water and squeeze lightly.

Wasabi
Wasabi is the spicy, light green paste you can always find in the corner of a sushi box.
There is a plastic tube of paste of wasabi available but a package of powdered wasabi makes a lot more sense if you use it frequently.

In a small container, such as a shot glass, put one heaping teaspoon of wasabi powder and one teaspoon of COLD water, mix well. Lukewarm water or even room temperature water is not appropriate, it does not produce the best flavor and taste of wasabi.

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Mix until it becomes thick, smooth paste.

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Cover the container with plastic wrap or simply place it upside down to keep it airtight. The chemical to produce the flavor is volatile.
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Leave it for ten to fifteen minutes.

Meanwhile, slice cucumbers.
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Leave the sliced cucumber in salted water for 10 to 15 minutes or until slightly softened but still crisp.
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Drain and squeeze out excess water.
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The above can be prepared in advance.

Place the cucumber, wakame, wasabi and mayo in a bowl and toss gently.
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When well dressed, try tasting and drizzle it with just enough amount of soy sauce to perfection.
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Toss gently and serve immediately.
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I have this recipe in Japanese, too.
きゅうりとワカメのわさマヨサラダ

I have this recipe in Japanese, too.
きゅうりとわかめのわさマヨサラダ

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