Summertime is for the cool cucumber soup! Oi, or Korean cucumber is one of my favorite summertime vegetables, since it’s very flavorful but also good source of vitamins. This cold cucumber soup is prepared simply with fresh cucumbers and a soy sauce-based broth that is slightly sour and slightly sweet.
2 Korean cucumber (oi 오이), or 4 tender pickling cucumber - called "Kirbys"
sea salt for rubbing
2 cups cold water
3 tbsp clear soy sauce (guk ganjang 국간장)
1 tsp minced garlic
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
3 tbsp vinegar
1 tsp roasted sesame seed (tongkae 통깨)
1 small fresh red pepper
2 stalks green onion
Rub salt on the cucumber skin with both hands, and rinse it well. Rubbing with salt somewhat takes away rough needles and also helps removing the pesticide residues.
For the soup broth, mix 2 cups of cold water with soy sauce, garlic, sugar, salt and vinegar. Mix well, and put it in the refrigerator – let it cool for half an hour. If you have less time, put it in the freezer.
Cut the ends off the cucumber then julienne into thin strips. Slice green onion and pepper thin and cut into small pieces.
Bring out the soup, add cucumber pieces, stir and taste. Adjust salt and soy sauce if necessary. If you want more soupy, then add cold water, or even float some ice cubes. Put green onion and pepper on top and garnish with roasted sesame seed. Serve with rice.