Monday, 21 November 2011

Thanksgiving Week: Hungarian Cucumber Salad

This time of year everything gets CRAZY, hence no blogging. But I intend to pick it up! This week I will be doing a series of posts to honour my American heritage. I moved to Australia in my teens, but before that, Thanksgiving was my favourite holiday - and my family had the BEST Thanksgiving. Clueless friends and acquaintances would always go "OOOh, but what could you possibly eat? What is Thanksgiving without the turkey?" Heathens! Little did they know how much they, in fact, were the ones missing out.

Some of the Tofurky-day dishes I miss the most are kind of impossible to make here due to lack of specific ingredients, but I will be posting some side dishes (and if I can swing it, a classic dessert) that are yummy comfort food and also delicious! Most of them are variations on traditional Hungarian fare, and may look and sound weird but actually turn out quite lovely.

This cucumber salad dish isn't a salad in the traditional sense - I think it to be more of a cold soup. But then again, I don't mind slurping up vinegar and raw garlic! Prep time: very short (plus sitting); Serves: at least six


  • 2 large cucumbers
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • salt, lots of salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3/4 cup white vinegar
  • heaping tbsp sugar
  • heaping tbsp sour cream
  • heaping tbsp Hungarian paprika

Peel your cucumbers, then slice them with a mandolin - they need to be as thin as possible.



After each half of a cucumber is sliced, sprinkle some salt on top (I grind sea salt over it). Once both cucumbers have been sliced, and salt layered, mix to evenly distribute the salt and let stand for 10 minutes. While you're doing this, mince the garlic and create a solution of water, vinegar and sugar. Stir the sugar/water/vinegar mixture until the sugar is dissolved. Add the garlic and the liquid mixture to the cucumbers.


Add the sour cream and sprinkle the paprika over the top.


Stir until combined, cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. (Best if let sit overnight!) Serve cold, in a small bowl - and yes, the salad "dressing" should be slightly pink.


(Oh, and in case you were wondering, we never actually ate Tofurky on Thanksgiving - but were sure to snap up the post-holiday clearanced items for pre-Christmas Tofurky dinners!)


  1. Interesting, it's almost part salad, part soup, part pickle! :)

  2. I used to sip on straight white vinegar as a kid, so I know I'd love this :D