Bowl of Salted Cucumbers
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Cucumbers, Salted
Russia
  -   Smedomi
Makes
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
1-1/4 #  
**
4 hrs
Must
This is a very popular zakuski (appetizer) in Russia, served by the piece rather than as a salad. This is an "official" version, definitely "do ahead" - for a quick version see our recipe Cucumbers, Marinated. You can serve in a bowl with toothpicks, or on cut squares of black bread. Served plain, they may be dipped in honey or sour cream.



2-1/4
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10
10
4
2
2
20
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4
1
3
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#
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cl


oz

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c
t
T
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Cucumbers (1)
-- Layering
Black Currant Leaves (2)  
Garlic
Dill Sprig
Bay Leaves
Horseradish, fresh
Peppercorns
-- Marinade
Water
Wine Vinegar, white
Salt
-- Dips
Honey
Sour Cream
Make   -   (4 hr - 22 min work)
  1. Cut ends from CUCUMBERS and cut into thick sticks about 2 inches long, or however long fits in your cucumbers without waste. For narrow Persian Cucumbers I quarter them lengthwise and make 2 or 3 cuts crosswise, depending on length.
  2. Peel GARLIC and crush lightly.
  3. Cut HORSERADISH into very tiny dice.
  4. Place all Marinade items in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil, then take off heat and let cool.
  5. In a large glass jar, layer Cucumbers interspersed with all the Layering items.
  6. Pour Marinade over the Cucumbers to fill the jar. Cover tightly and let sit at room temperature overnight, then refrigerate for at least 2 weeks before serving. They will keep a couple month in the fridge.
  7. Drain the Cucumbers and serve as appetizers. They can be in a bowl with toothpicks to be eaten with dips. My favorite way is on squares of black bread over a dollop of Sour Cream (see photo).
NOTES:
  1. Cucumbers:   If at all possible, use narrow unwaxed cucumbers that need not be peeled or seeded (Persian, Japanese, European. etc.). If you must use the standard green blimps, peel them and seed them. Weight given is after peeling and seeding.
  2. Black Current Leaves   Fresh leaves are illegal in the United States to protect the timber industry. I tasted some dried leaves from Russia. They tasted rather like dried mint, so I used fresh mint leaves in this recipe.
  3. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
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