If you have never tried smashed marinated cucumber before, then you are missing out. It is so savory, fragrant and refreshing especially on a hot summer day.

Smashed cucumbers, also called pai huang gua,(拍黃瓜)is a traditional Chinese dish that is typically served during the summer. I like to use mini cucumber since its almost seedless and has thin and crisp skin.

This dish is super easy and quick to make. All you have to do is smash the cucumber with either the back of knife, bottom of palm (by pressing it down) or place in a zip lock bag and smash lightly with a meat mallet. For the marinate, combine salt, garlic powder (fresh is preferred, but if you are allergic or have a sensitive stomach to raw garlic, it’s best to substitute with garlic powder instead),seasoned rice vinegar, soy sauce, gochujang flake (if you have fresh chili, it would be better), and sesame oil in a bowl and massage the cucumber in the marinade and rest for 30 minutes in the fridge before serving this savory, crunchy, and refreshing appetizer. (or have it as snack! it’s low in calorie and super yummy!)

Before we get cooking, let’s learn about the ingredients in this dish and just how it can effect our body from both beneficial and “things to watch out for” point of view.

DISCLAIMER ALERT! All of my posts are not intended to treat or override the decision to see your personal doctor or physician. I strongly advise everyone to discuss any serious condition or to your medical health provider. Everything I say and write are all based on personal experience and through reading materials provided by medical professionals. I believe everyone’s body is unique and there’s no one miracle diet or medicine for everyone! I am here only to provide and share knowledge I have learned from the general holistic wellness point of view. All of the information and recipes that I am providing are safe for majority of people. All of the information listed can be found through the reference

BENEFITS:

Cucumber:

  • Clears heat in your body while it quenches thirst.
  • Can relieve edema.
  • Great for de-bloating. (This dish does contain some sodium content from soy sauce, so I would not suggest eating dish for the purpose of de-bloating.)
  • Aids in constipation from its high fiber and liquid content.
  • Lowers the bad cholesterol.

Gochujang Flake:

  • Aids any digestion problem. (Did you know that natural healers in Korea would tell people who are experiencing digestion problem to take this pepper?)
  • Controls blood sugar level due to Capsaicin.
  • Fights inflammation such as cancer. 

Rice Vinegar:

  • Stimulates digestion.
  • Assists in weight loss process.

Sesame Seed/Oil:

THINGS TO KNOW:

  • For anyone who needs to watch salt intake, it is best to consume this dish in moderation.

References:

Goldsmith, E., & Klein, M. (2017). Foods that heal: their nature, flavor and therapeutic value according to Chinese medicine. In Nutritional healing with Chinese medicine: +175 recipes for optimal health (pp. 184–205). essay, Robert Rose Inc.

lbobvalla, et al. “5 Shocking Health Benefits of Eating Gochujang.” Health Benefits Of, 29 June 2021, healthbenefitsof.org/5-shocking-health-benefits-of-eating-gochujang.

Kamal-Eldin A, Moazzami A, Washi S. Sesame seed lignans: potent physiological modulators and possible ingredients in functional foods & nutraceuticals. Recent Pat Food Nutr Agric. 2011 Jan;3(1):17-29. doi: 10.2174/2212798411103010017. PMID: 21114470.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Have you tried out this recipe? If so, feel free to tag me @brainbeautybody for a chance to get featured. I also would love it if you comment below and let me know if you have made any substitutions and how it turned out for you!

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