King of Noodles sits just steps from our apartment. The small, sort of subterranean hole in the wall on Irving at 18th Avenue serves some of the best food in the Sunset. Their lamb noodle soup haunts us. It is the thing that most draws us back again and again. That and an impressive list of hand-filled steamed dumplings (made across the street and delivered fresh throughout the day). More on that another day.
In addition to a number of tasty, hand-pulled noodle dishes, the restaurant offers a few fresh, raw vegetable starters, including this crushed Persian cucumber salad. We love it and think the garlic lovers among you will too!
Persian cucumbers are becoming increasingly available in our local markets. We typically get ours from Trader Joe’s, but our local fresh market at 22nd Avenue & Irving sells them too. That’s where these came from. Persian cucumbers have crisp, dense structures with tiny seeds that you don’t have to remove. They’re tender and not as bitter as garden variety cucumber seeds.
This is as simple a dish as you’ll find. You’ll want to eat this as soon after preparing it as possible to preserve the delicious contrast of cool fresh cucumber and salty soy. The cucumbers will get watery over time and lose their snap if left to sit in the dressing for too long.
Persian Cucumbers in Garlic and Soy Sauce
4 Persian cucumbers
3 tablespoons soy sauce (we prefer low sodium varieties)
1/4 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 large clove fresh chopped garlic
On a clean cutting board, trim the ends of the cucumbers and cut into inch-long segments.
Using a fork, the back of a spoon, or the side of a knife, gently crush the cucumber segments until they just split in half.
Place the crushed cucumber in a mixing bowl. Add soy sauce, sesame oil and chopped garlic to bowl and gently toss with cucumbers until they’re completely coated with the soy dressing.