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Marinated in a simple pickling agent, these Quick Japanese Pickled Cucumbers (Asazuke) are a refreshing side or appetizer to serve with your meal!
The Japanese usually serve several kinds of the pickled dish along with white rice. Although Japanese restaurants or supermarkets here in the US don’t offer many varieties, there is a ton of selection in Japan. In fact, we have specialty stores that just sell various types of pickles!
Today I am sharing a very simple Quick Japanese Pickled Cucumber (Asazuke) recipe that you can enjoy at home. It’s a refreshing side dish, or we call it Hashi Yasume which literally means “chopsticks break.”
This dish usually contrasts in flavor, texture, and temperature to the main dish and we eat Hashi Yasume between rice and main dish, and between rice and other side dishes, alternatively. Hope you enjoy this homemade side dish.
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Marinated in simple pickling agent, this quick and easy Japanese Pickled Cucumbers are a refreshing side or appetizer to serve with your meal!
- 1 English cucumber
- pinch kosher/sea salt (I use Diamond Crystal; Use half for table salt)
- ½ tsp toasted white sesame seeds (to garnish)
Combine all the ingredients for Seasonings in a small bowl.
Alternately peel a ½-inch-side strip lengthwise, leaving a strip of the skin intact. With this method, the cucumber slices have some decorative dark green accents and a little bit of extra crunchiness. Cut the cucumber in the Japanese cutting technique called Rangiri. Sprinkle salt over the cucumbers and rub them. After 5 minutes, squeeze water out. This step is important so the moisture in the cucumber does not come out during pickling.
In a Ziploc bag, add the seasonings and cucumbers and rub from outside the bag. Keep in the fridge for 2 hours.
Serve and sprinkle some sesame seeds. Enjoy it within 1-2 days. To avoid the cucumbers being salty, you can discard the pickling liquid after 1-2 hours or when they are pickled to your liking.
Recipe by Namiko Chen of Just One Cookbook. All images and content on this site are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission. If you’d like to share this recipe on your site, please re-write the recipe in your own words and link to this post as the original source. Thank you.