Servings: 1 jar   Difficulty: Easy


  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons mirin
  • 1 tablespoon salt, preferrably sea or kosher
  • 5 Japanese cucumbers, or 2 English cucumbers
  • 8 shiso leaves (or substitute basil)


  1. Put sugar, vinegar, mirin and salt into a non-reactive bowl. Whisk until the sugar and salt are dissolved.
  2. Slice cucumbers as thinly as possible. (To seed or not is up to you and what you found at the market. With the skinny Japanese cukes or the English version, you should be okay without removing the seeds.)
  3. Gather the shiso leaves like a deck of cards, roll into a tube and slice, chiffonade-style, like you would with basil.
  4. Add cucumbers and shiso to the marinade and stir. Try to cover the vegetables with the marinade. It’s okay if the liquid doesn’t submerge the cucumbers. They will break down and get smaller as they marinate.
  5. Put the mix in the fridge and let marinate for at least 4 hours. Mix a couple of times if you can, but it’s okay if you don’t. Once pointed in the right direction, cucumbers tend to take care of themselves.
  6. Serve, icy cold out of the fridge if you can.