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Persian Cucumber and Strawberry Salad

Serves 6.


    Cucumber and Strawberry Salad

    This is a great addition to an alfresco lunch or a light and lovely afternoon snack. Sumac gives this salad a pop of peppery bright flavour that brings out the sweet fruitiness in the berries. The cucumbers temper the heat in the spicy almonds.


    Tip: Persian cucumbers are small and thin-skinned, and with fewer seeds than English cucumbers. Substitute one large English cucumber for three Persian ones.

    Spice it up!

    Harissa is a spicy and aromatic chili paste made from chili peppers, paprika, and olive oil. Often used in Middle Eastern and North African cooking, it lends a spicy, smoky flavour to dishes. It’s most commonly found in ready-made jars, tubes, and cans. Look for it in Middle Eastern markets or specialty food shops, but if you can’t find it, use your favourite chili paste or hot sauce.


    Persian Cucumber and Strawberry Salad


    • 3 small Persian cucumbers, split lengthwise
    • 3 cups (750 mL) small strawberries (cut in half if large)
    • 1/4 cup (60 mL) finely chopped cilantro
    • 1 tsp (5 mL) sumac
    • 1/4 tsp (0.5 mL) sea salt
    • 1/3 cup (80 mL) blanched almonds
    • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) harissa or your favourite hot sauce
    • 1/3 cup (80 mL) plain Greek yogurt
    • 1 to 2 Tbsp (15 to 30 mL) milk


    Per serving:

    • calories93
    • protein4g
    • fat5g
      • saturated fat1g
      • trans fat0g
    • carbohydrates11g
      • sugars6g
      • fibre3g
    • sodium105mg



    Using fingers, coarsely break cucumbers into chunks. Place in bowl with berries. Sprinkle with cilantro, sumac, and salt. Let stand for 15 minutes to blend flavours.


    Meanwhile, toss almonds with harissa (if harissa is too thick, thin with a little olive oil), then roast in preheated 375 F (190 C) oven until fragrant, 5 minutes.


    Thin yogurt with milk to make it easier to drizzle.


    Place berry mixture on platter. Drizzle with yogurt and sprinkle with spiced almonds. Taste, and sprinkle with more sumac, if needed.



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