- ACTIVE: 10 MIN
- TOTAL TIME: 25 MIN
- SERVINGS: 6
Michael Black, an army brat, grew up eating his Okinawan mother's cooking in Japan, North Carolina and Germany. When he became a professional chef, he sometimes re-created those dishes with the help of a comprehensive book from the 1970s about Okinawan food, Ryukyu Ryori. Black's mother made this incredibly simple salad with only three ingredients: long, thin Japanese cucumbers, shoyu (Japanese soy sauce) and bonito flakes (shavings of dried smoked bonito, a kind of tuna). Black's version, which he serves at San Francisco's cult Japanese restaurant Sebo, is topped with a lovely sesame-soy vinaigrette and scallions.
- 1/4 cup shoyu (see Note) or soy sauce
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil
- 2 1/2 pounds Japanese cucumbers
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- Freshly ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon bonito flakes (see Note)
- In a bowl, combine the shoyu with the rice vinegar and sesame oil. Using a vegetable peeler, remove strips of skin from the cucumbers. Halve the cucumbers lengthwise and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch half moons. Add the cucumbers and scallions to the bowl, season with pepper and toss to coat. Refrigerate for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with the bonito flakes and serve.