Wilted Cucumber Salad

When I first became vegetarian in the 1970s, one of my favorite cookbooks was the Moosewood Cookbook. When it’s younger sibling, The Enchanted Broccoli Forest, came out, I wanted to love it. But love never blossomed between us and I gave away my copy years ago. Recently, though, a friend introduced me to a recipe from the Enchanted Broccoli Forest that I wish I’d known back in those days: wilted cucumber salad.

This salad takes all the best of cucumber and turns it into something magical. I could eat an entire batch in one sitting. I probably would, too, if my husband weren’t on the other side of the table demanding his share. I guess we’ll make a double batch next time.

You can make this dish with your favorite combination of vinegars. I use 1/2 high quality cider vinegar (Braggs will do) and 1/2 rice vinegar. I don’t like to use a vinegar that’s too strongly flavored, or it will overpower the natural goodness of the cucumber.

This is a great make-ahead dish. While it’s best to give it a full day to let the flavors blend, I’m usually dipping into the bowl as soon as the salad is chilled.


  • 4 medium cucumbers, peeled, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2/3 cup vinegar (combine your favorites)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 4 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped, or 2 tsp dried dill
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. Place the sliced cucumber and onion in a medium sized bowl.
  2. Combine the vinegar, water, sugar, and salt in a saucepan and heat just to boiling. Remove from heat.
  3. Pour the hot liquid over the sliced cucumber and onion, and stir to combine. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  4. Add the dill and black pepper, and stir.
  5. Cover tightly and chill. Serve cold.

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