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Cucumber Salad with Tahini-Yogurt Sauce

  • Author: Alexandra
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 2 to 4 servings


A super simple salad: ribbons of cucumber salted and left to drain until they soften + a smear of yogurt-tahini sauce, a recipe adapted from the Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem. You can turn this into an appetizer or dinner by broiling some bread drizzled with olive oil. Serve the bread aside the salad or assemble little tartines: smear the bread with the yogurt sauce, top with the cucumber salad. Serve more yogurt sauce on the side. Note: My husband found this a little bland — offensive! — so, I would sprinkle the cucs with some olive oil and vinegar if you do, too. I personally like it as it is or with more yogurt sauce, but I can imagine a little oil and vinegar being nice, too.


  • 2 to 3 cucumbers, peeled
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 cup stirred tahini paste
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • za’atar or sesame seeds or nice sea salt for sprinkling


  1. Thinly slice the cucumbers lengthwise into ribbons. I use my mandoline for this, and I stop when I get to the seeds. (To not be wasteful, I slice up the leftover seedy rectangle, salt it, and eat it as a snack.) You can also use a peeler if you press down hard enough. Or simply slice with a knife as thinly as possible — once you salt them, they will soften.
  2. Place the ribbons in a colander, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and leave to drain over a plate or in the sink for about 15 minutes—you just want them to soften/relax a bit. Toss every five minutes or so.
  3. Meanwhile, make the yogurt sauce: stir together the tahini, yogurt, lemon, maple syrup, water, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Taste. Add more salt if necessary.
  4. Smear a plate with 1/4 cup of the sauce (or more—see photo for reference). Top with the wilted, ribbony cucumber slices. Season as you wish with za’atar, sesame seeds, sea salt, or all three.
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes