Place a chopstick on either side of the cucumber as shown. Make thin slices in the cucumber perpendicular to it up to the chopsticks.
Turn the cucumber over, and set the chopsticks on both sides again.
Place the uncut side of the cucumber up, and make thin 45 degree cuts along it up to the chopsticks.
The knife blade is not flat, it's vertical.
Even if it's sliced from top and bottom, the middle is still barely connected. It's easier to eat than my previous version.
Bend the cucumber as if a dragon is curling up.
Mix the ★ ingredients together and put the curled up cucumber into it. Chill in the refrigerator for 2 hours and it's done.
Story Behind this Recipe
This dish may not be well known in Japan, but it's famous in China. It's very simple but refreshing and delicious.
Adjust the spiciness with the amount of doubanjiang you add. I didn't invent this decorative cutting method. It's a traditional Chinese professional cutting technique called "the returning sparrow", and pros can make the cuts much thinner and more evenly. I'm so envious, but that's beyond my skills!