Smacked cucumber in garlicky sauce (Suan ni pai huang gua) from Every Grain of Rice: Simple Chinese Home Cooking (page 34) by Fuchsia Dunlop

  • cucumbers
  • garlic
  • caster sugar
  • chilli oil
  • Chinkiang vinegar
  • light soy sauce

Where’s the full recipe - why can I only see the ingredients?

Always check the publication for a full list of ingredients. An Eat Your Books index lists the main ingredients and does not include 'store-cupboard ingredients' (salt, pepper, oil, flour, etc.) - unless called for in significant quantity.

Notes about this recipe

  • eileentien on November 13, 2022

    Easy and delicious. I only added 1 teaspoon of chili oil and it was spicy enough for us. This is my go-to Chinese vegetable side dish when I feel lazy.

  • Acarroll on April 03, 2022

    I halved the amount of chili oil. I thought the spice was perfect, my husband thought it was too spicy. We both thought it was a bit oily, even with half the amount of oil. Overall we enjoyed but wouldn't make again.

  • Lafro on March 26, 2022

    A nice refreshing side dish to go with the other recipes in the book. Simple and delicious.

  • lorloff on January 05, 2022

    This dish was a home run. Simple, spicy and delicious. I great example of how simple great ingredients make the dish. I used Persian cucumbers from the farmer’s market, Black Slate Chile oil, Okinawan sugar, and amazing Sichuan peppers from Mala Market that I pan roasted then pulverized in my spice blender. A couple of pinches and the dish really sang without being too hot. Light soy kept the cucumbers a beautiful looking color too. Will make again and again.

  • snoozermoose on December 11, 2021

    A classic recipe very similar to the one my mom makes. Best eaten the day of, as the raw garlic really increases in potency as it sits.

  • Agaillard on August 06, 2021

    So simple yet great flavours... You could drink the sauce by itself :) Did not have chili oil and no time to make some so just added some cayenne, but I did have use coarsely blended sichuan

  • Bloominanglophile on September 11, 2020

    One of the best uses for a cucumber, and simple, too. My family loves this dish!

  • jenburkholder on September 09, 2020

    Good, simple, flavorful. Goes well with almost anything.

  • ebalk02 on February 23, 2020

    So good and wouldn't change a thing. Note if your homemade or store bought chili oil already has sichuan pepper.

  • sosayi on February 15, 2020

    Love this recipe and make it often. The Szechuan peppercorns really take it over the top. Quick, Easy, and delicious.

  • Dannausc on May 06, 2018

    I made a double recipe and used 1 T. Sesame chili oil and 2 T. Vegetable oil because I thought it would be too spicy with that much chili oil. It was really easy and good. Next time I might try it was the suggested amount of chili oil.

  • Yildiz100 on November 25, 2016

    This did not work for me. I used the online recipe, and I actually wonder if it contains an error. I thought it was way too sweet.

  • rionafaith on October 15, 2016

    Delicious. I had a pretty big cucumber so I doubled the sauce, and I'm glad -- it's a great combination of flavors and two of us easily split the double portion. (The BF loved and even drank the residual sauce after all the cucumbers were gone.) I omitted the optional sichuan pepper as I didn't have any, but there was still a great tingling spiciness from the homemade chili oil (made according to the recipe in the book). Will definitely make again, and I can't wait to try the other variations as well!

  • urmami on August 22, 2016

    Damn, is this good. We like it on the drier side so usually use just 1 T chili oil or add more cucumber, but the flavor is phenomenal and the dressing is a beloved staple in our home.

  • krista_jo on April 10, 2015

    This is an easy staple (if you have chilli oil on hand). We make it weekly. I always rinse off the salt and then drain the cucumber or pat it dry before dressing.

  • adrienneyoung on April 06, 2014


  • Barb_N on March 26, 2014

    Side dish for red braised pork and rice, eggplant and pork belly in the rice cooker (fan wu cai style). Firstly, it's great to take your aggressions out on a cucumber on a weeknight in the name of culinary excellence. And who would complain about a marinade of soy, chinese vinegar, chili paste (or oil) and minced garlic? I rinsed and squeezed the cucumber, adding to the distressed effect of smacking- it helped with the absorbtion of the sauce. Despite all the violence, this is an easy quick tasty recipe.

  • Breadcrumbs on March 06, 2013

    p. 34 I’ve been craving this since I first purchased the book and the recipe didn’t disappoint. I’ll note that I tasted the cucumber after draining and I did think it was a little too salty for my taste so I decided to rinse it given that the sauce has soy. I thought this was fresh and delicious. I didn’t make my own chili oil and will rectify that the next time around. It was a little too hot for mr bc as is. (I’d say “yay, more for me” but that’s not very nice, is it? Even if it was true!! Photos here:

  • Delys77 on March 05, 2013

    Pg. 34 Very interesting flavour with strong notes of chilli and soy. I would definitely repeat but I would pat some of the salt off the cucumber before dressing and skip the peppercorns. Very nice in small quantitities but doesn't keep well.

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