Saturday, September 03, 2011

Salad Days, Green in Judgement, Hot in Chilli*

You're not an original!" screamed the Internet back at Sra.

"Oh, alright, alright," said Sra, sullenly. "How many other crazed foodies do you think would call their dish cucumber noodles? Well, quite a few, it looks like," she muttered, teetering on the edge of a sour soliloquy, pausing to wonder if they had also tempered olive oil with red chillies and garlic and seasoned it with zatar, and all this only after adding some zucchini noodles to the cucumber.

And that, dear audience, is exactly what I did.

Peeled three tired old cucumbers and again peeled their flesh into strips - these are what I - and several other foodies - call noodles. Did the same with one tired old zucchini which hid its fatigue very well. (Tired meant that I had to discard quite a few bits.)

Chopped up an onion and added it to the above.

Heated a splash of extra-virgin olive oil and tempered it with two red chillies and two cloves of garlic

Added about 2 tsp of zatar, a splash of red wine vinegar and some salt

Tossed it all together in a bowl and let it rest an hour or two until dinner.

Then I tasted it and discovered it was one chilli too hot for comfort. And I'm no wimp when it comes to chillies.

But I ate it up anyway because no one else would - there were two other diners - and adding some dal to the salad reduced the heat.

You could do that too. It's also my tried-and-tested substitute for rice in rice-and-dal - I've done it before. You needn't peel the cucumber into strips for that, though, just cut it up regular.

And my favourite use for zatar is to use it on baked potatoes.

*I'm no Cleopatra, so I hope Shakespeare will at least forgive me if not appreciate me for twisting his words this way ...


  1. make ficaccia with zatar Sra. it tastes heavenly.
    the cucumber noodles is a great idea. my son would love it.

  2. Awesome! I usually do not feel like chopping and having old cucumbers ... but this is a great idea. The thin strips would be softer and the dressing will get some moisture out. Too good! :-)

  3. The internet tells me a lot of things i don't like to hear too. At least i think you are original, i have never heard of cucumber noodles before and i love the idea :)

  4. Cucumber is not my fav veggie, when ever i eat cucumber here i moans saying the cucumber in India is more tastier. I love the way you have used zatar, i have a small bottle here, which i mostly use when i grill meat.

  5. Hey your recipe may not be original but your writing is not to mention the name of your blog. Besides, we should file original as one of those words that is relative and means different to different people. Love cucumber and zucchini in stripes like that. Try rolling the strips with some stuffing. That could be original?

  6. Interesting twist to a salad! Necessity is the mother,,,,and all that :)

  7. The internet dared to tell you that you are not original??? Your writing most certainly is, Sra.....and refreshing too.

  8. Foodies call it noodles ? lesson learned

  9. I have seen spaghetti squash, but calling cucumber strips noodles is news for me :)


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