Cucumber & Onion Salad with Smoked Salmon


Due to a kitchen remodel I’ll be without a kitchen for a few weeks, so I’ve asked some friends to keep my virtual kitchen going with some of their fabulous recipes.  My first friend is Su Anne, a very special person in my life. Su Anne and I met in college back in the 70’s and she is one of those friends that you have for a lifetime.

Shortly after Bobby and I moved to New Mexico, Su Anne moved to NM, a different town, but only an hour away.  She met a wonderful man, married, and settled down – sort of. 🙂  Every time we get together, we talk food, cook food, and eat food; therefore, the perfect friend to get this series started.

Albuquerque Balloon Festival – 1980’s: Su Anne, me and the husbands


The meal that Su Anne is sharing with you today is one that she made for Bobby and me several years ago and that we’ve enjoyed many times since.  Thank you Su Anne for sharing this meal here in my kitchen!  It’s all yours Babe!
Su Anne:

Many years ago a friend came to poker night with a side of smoked salmon, some cucumbers and a baguette. He and I played in the kitchen while the rest of the gang were playing cards. We have toasted his inspiration many, many times. Cool, quick, ridiculously easy and delicious, this is one of our favorite summer meals.


Cucumber & Onion Salad with Smoked Salmon

Dinner for 2 or appetizers for 4.
Prep time:  15 – 20 minutes
No cooking required


6 ounces hot-smoked salmon. See Kitchen Notes

1 large or 2 small cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced.
½ medium sweet onion sliced pole to pole in 1/8th inch strips.
½ tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. white wine vinegar
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp. capers, drained and chopped
Salt to taste
¼ tsp. freshly ground pepper
1 loaf crusty European style bread, thinly sliced


  1. Remove salmon from package to a serving plate and allow to soak up any juices while you make the salad.
  2. Lightly mix the mustard, vinegar, oil, capers, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Add the cucumbers and onions and toss to thoroughly coat.
  3. Serve with salmon and a loaf of crusty bread. Any leftover Cucumber & Onion Salad will keep overnight refrigerated.




Kitchen Notes

Smoked Salmon – We love smoked salmon and always have several packages of the “hot smoked” or “Kippered style” on hand. Though relatively expensive, it’s delicious, healthy, easy to crumble in salads, chowders and pasta dishes. It stores on the pantry shelf and is always in our food stash for camping and road trips. We buy hot-smoked salmon (sockeye is our favorite) that is cooked over alder wood in the Pacific NW. This is not the nova style that is cured rather than cooked.

Cucumbers – If the cucumber seeds are large and tough, split the cucumber lengthwise and scrape the seeds out with a spoon before slicing. I always remove the stem end down to where the seeds begin because it can be bitter.

Sweet Onions – The sweetest onions are really flat, not round, no matter what color or variety. Even a Vidalia, Maui or other supposedly sweet onion can be very pungent. Look for flat, disk shaped onions to use in salads and sandwiches. If sweet onions aren‘t available, use 4 or 5 medium green onions sliced lengthwise and then cut in 1” pieces.

Optional Herbs – A bit of fresh or dried dill works nicely with the cucumbers. 1-2 teaspoons of basil pesto in the dressing is also lovely.

Green Salad Variation – Instructions for a big tossed green salad with salmon and cucumber:

  1. Two hard boiled eggs, sliced and sprinkled with salt and pepper.
  2. Increase the dressing by 50% (no additional capers)
  3. Toss 4-6 cups of torn salad greens with the dressed cucumbers and onions.
  4. Divide the salad between two plates.
  5. Garnish each plate with a few slices of boiled egg.
  6. Top the salad with crumbled smoked salmon.
  7. Serve with crusty bread or garlic croutons

Garlic Anyone? – MJ’s mellow roasted garlic smears really nicely on the crusty bread and complements the salmon and cucumbers. Mash up the garlic cloves a bit to make it easier to spread. Or use MJ’s garlic oil to make a quick batch of croutons from some great bread (sourdough is yum). Warning!  Hot and crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside – garlic infused croutons are addictive!


Thank you so much Su Anne for sharing this wonderful meal and throwing in the Green Salad variation.  We made the green salad last night and it was delicious!  Loved taking a bite of smoked salmon with a slice of boiled egg.



This Cucumber and Onion Salad with Smoked Salmon has been shared with the following blog hop.  Be sure to click on the link for more exciting recipes!

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56 Responses to “Cucumber & Onion Salad with Smoked Salmon”

  1. Su Anne August 27, 2017 at 5:24 pm #

    Not sure why there are tears in my eyes. This too is one of my all time favorite photos of some my all time favorite people. Love ya!

    • mj August 27, 2017 at 8:32 pm #

      I tear up whenever I look at that photo as well. 🙂 So glad the 4 of us are still hanging out together after all these years! XOXOX

  2. Doug and Liz @ Pocket Change Gourmet September 25, 2012 at 7:58 pm #

    Your friend can cook!

  3. April @ The 21st Century Housewife September 20, 2012 at 4:55 am #

    Great guest post Su Anne! I’m so glad MJ invited you 🙂 Love this wholesome and delicious salad + smoked salmon recipe. I always prefer hot smoked salmon to the cured version!

  4. Laura @ Frugal Follies September 14, 2012 at 8:46 pm #

    Looks yummy! II love smoked salmon (though I love lox more)!

    Thanks for linking up with Frugal Food Thursday at Frugal Follies!

  5. sara August 31, 2012 at 10:16 am #

    Loving that cucumber salad – something about cucumber salads is always just so fresh and delicious!

  6. Baker Street August 28, 2012 at 8:34 pm #

    Love the simplicity of your salad and its so perfectly paired with the salmon. 🙂

  7. vianney August 28, 2012 at 1:47 pm #

    So sweet of Su Anne to step in while you are in the middle of a kitchen re model (how exciting) A great summer meal, light and loaded with flavors! Thanks for sharing!

  8. Tania @ A Perfect Pantry August 27, 2012 at 5:39 pm #

    One of my all time favourite salads is cucumber salads… and yours look so good. I’m going to give it a go, since I have some salmon ready for lunch today:)

  9. Amber @ The Cook's Sister August 27, 2012 at 8:51 am #

    Hope your kitchen remodeling goes smoothly MJ!

    What a great meal Su Anne. So simple and so many delicious items! You cucumber and onion salad looks delish!

  10. Anne@FromMySweetHeart August 26, 2012 at 11:51 pm #

    Su Anne…what a fabulous, light, summer meal. I will have to keep that tip in mind about the onions! So great to meet you through MJ…whom I adore! And I am glad you helped to keep her ‘kitchen’ running! What a wonderful post, ladies! (and MJ…hope you are keeping your sanity during your kitchen renovation!)

  11. Food Jaunts August 26, 2012 at 5:15 pm #

    Perfectly simple and delish. I love smoked salmon (and really salmon in any way) but unfortunately the husband hates it. Next time he’s away though I know what I’ll be eating (plus bonus on it not needing to be cooked!).

  12. Sammie August 26, 2012 at 12:39 pm #

    oh that just looks so delicious!!! I loove smoked salmon! This must be delicious!!

  13. Raymund August 26, 2012 at 2:46 am #

    That piece of smoked salmon looks good

  14. Kathy August 25, 2012 at 2:36 pm #

    MJ, I’m happy about your remodel, as I was the lucky guest at Su Anne’s for lunch and enjoyed this great salad & salmon. Thanks for posting the great Balloon Fiesta photo from a ‘couple’ of years ago.

    • mj August 26, 2012 at 11:06 am #

      Thanks Kathy for stopping by! I too love this meal, but then I love anything that Su Anne makes!!! Yeh – let’s say a “couple” of years. 🙂

  15. LIz August 25, 2012 at 1:02 pm #

    SO healthy and delicious! I could eat this over and over! Thanks, Su Anne 🙂

  16. Tina (PinayInTexas) August 25, 2012 at 10:40 am #

    MJ, thanks for introducing us to Su Anne! It’s so nice of her to share this wonderful meal with us!
    Btw, hope everything is going on well with the kitchen remodelling…

  17. Nancy/SpicieFoodie August 25, 2012 at 8:26 am #

    What a special friendship and bond you too have:) The salmon looks to die for!

  18. Michi August 25, 2012 at 8:10 am #

    Cucumber salad has to be one of my favorite summer salads! I might try your recipe with red onions (what I currently have in my fridge)! Mmmm refreshing and delicious.

  19. Marta@What should I eat for breakfast today August 25, 2012 at 7:42 am #

    simple but delicious. cucumber and onion salad is very popular in my home. I like it with a schnizel the best 🙂 but it must go well with salmon as well.

  20. France @ Beyond The Peel August 24, 2012 at 11:46 am #

    My kind of salad! Simple and flavorful. I’ll try this for sure.

  21. Adora's Box August 24, 2012 at 11:02 am #

    The best meals are simple ones, preferably enjoyed with good company. Good luck on the kitchen makeover and enjoy your time off cooking.

  22. love2dine August 24, 2012 at 10:50 am #

    that would be my favourite dish, especially smoked salmon.

  23. Minnie@thelady8home August 24, 2012 at 10:35 am #

    Love smoked salmon and the combo with cucumber salad sure looks like a winner. Such simple and great elements.

  24. Kelly @ Inspired Edibles August 23, 2012 at 8:02 pm #

    Hi Su Anne! First of all, I have to say that is such a fantastic photo of you, MJ and your men… talk about happy faces!

    I’m all about simplicity in the summertime (and, well, most of the time) but especially through the warm weather season. (We have to take advantage of our very brief hot season here in Canada ;-)). I’m smiling over this dish because it reminds me so much of the one I posted in the heart of the summer – grilled salmon with zucchini ribbon salad. The same sort of elements and simplicity and this dish looks fantastic. Love the capers mixed in with the salad! Just lovely.

    • mj August 26, 2012 at 11:04 am #

      Thanks Kelly! Yes, I remember your grilled salmon with zucchini ribbon salad! Perfect summer salads!

  25. amanda August 23, 2012 at 3:11 pm #

    I love this! My grandma used to make a variety of this with tomatoes instead of capers – I’d eat *so much* of this every summer when I was younger. I still make it for me & my husband, but it’s not the same. Grandma must have had some special kitchen magic that I haven’t earned yet.
    I manage the facebook page over at SeaBear & had to feature your recipe –

    • mj August 23, 2012 at 7:18 pm #

      Thanks Amanda! It’s always hard to recreate those grandma dishes isn’t it? 🙂 thanks so much for posting Su Anne’s meal on the SeaBear FB page! If I’m not mistaken, SeaBear is where she buys her salmon.

  26. Cucina49 August 23, 2012 at 1:20 pm #

    Su Anne, what a fabulous-looking dish–I think it would make a perfect summer appetizer. MJ, hope the remodel is going well! I know it’s really hard to be without a kitchen.

  27. Sissi August 23, 2012 at 10:29 am #

    Hi, Su Anne. Congratulations for this fantastic post and inspiring recipe. It’s a wonderful summer meal. Cucumbers and capers are my staple, so I will certainly make this salad soon. I love the combination.

  28. Su Anne August 23, 2012 at 8:21 am #

    Thanks MJ, it is a pleasure and an honor to be a part of MJ’s Kitchen. I am so lucky and thankful that you are a part of my life. (Laughing to myself about the first time we met.) Looking forward to a tour of the new kitchen. Hugs to you and Bob and good luck with the remodeling!

    • mj August 23, 2012 at 10:30 am #

      Thank YOU Su Anne!!!! You provided me with a GREAT post to start with!!!! Love you Darlin!

  29. LinsFood August 23, 2012 at 7:16 am #

    That cucumber salad looks so good, I could eat a whole cucumber in one sitting so this is the perfect salad! And with smoked salmon too, yummy!

  30. Sanjeeta kk August 23, 2012 at 2:50 am #

    Awee….how I wish you stayed near…you would be given a big welcome in my kitchen…can’t stop salivating just imagining diving in the dishes you would cook for me 🙂
    Nice to meet Su Anne here..that platter of fresh cucumber and onion looks so refreshing!

    • mj August 23, 2012 at 10:28 am #

      Thanks Sanjeeta! I wish I lived near you! I would love to have you cook a couple of meals for us during the remodel! 🙂

  31. Nami | Just One Cookbook August 23, 2012 at 1:15 am #

    Hello Su Anne! It’s very nice to meet MJ’s friend here! Such a light and healthy dish which is perfect for hot summer days. Vinegar always bring one’s appetite and I already love this cucumber onion combination with capers… I love capers… Glad you shared this delicious recipe while MJ is busy with kitchen remodeling. Thank you!

  32. wok with ray August 22, 2012 at 7:21 pm #

    I love the dressing and the capers… my favorite. You guys are so happy and cute in that picture. It’s very nice meeting Su Anne and thank you for this very refreshing salad. Thank you MJ for introducing Su Anne. You both are very lucky to have each other as lifetime friends.

    • mj August 23, 2012 at 10:26 am #

      Thanks Ray! Yes, I consider myself very lucky, and we do know how to have fun! 🙂

  33. Priya August 22, 2012 at 6:31 pm #

    Love the salad and the bread – And I am sure I’d have loved the fish, if i weren’t a vegetarian 🙂

    • mj August 23, 2012 at 10:25 am #

      Thanks Priya! I’ve had this salad without the salmon many, many times! So go for it! It’s a great salad!

  34. kitchenriffs August 22, 2012 at 2:11 pm #

    Great dish! I love smoked salmon, and any kind of salmon seems to pair so well with cucumbers. Nice to meet Su Anne, too.

  35. Choc Chip Uru August 22, 2012 at 12:27 pm #

    Nice to meet you Su Anne, thank you for sharing this delicious meal with us all today 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  36. Suzi August 22, 2012 at 10:22 am #

    Su Anne it is nice to meet you, and you sound like a lot of fun and what a tasty dish you’ve given us. MJ, I bet you can’t wait to get back into your re-modeled kitchen. How are the hot peppers this year??

    • mj August 23, 2012 at 10:24 am #

      Thanks Suzi!! The hot peppers are HOT! I roasted up from Sandia hots the other day and they lived up to their name! 🙂 I just love green chile season. The smell of roasting chiles is all over town!

  37. Eri August 22, 2012 at 9:46 am #

    Such a lovely dish, I love everything about it. Love the 80’s photo too!

  38. Zsuzsa August 22, 2012 at 9:45 am #

    I will have to try this salad. They keep growing and we cannot keep up. I can use up the large ones for this. YeY

  39. ChgoJohn August 22, 2012 at 9:29 am #

    This is such a perfect dish for Summer. I do enjoy smoked salmon and always welcome new ways to prepare it. And the cucumber salad is a great Summer treat. THis works for me on so many levels. Great post!

  40. Jane August 22, 2012 at 9:27 am #

    I love smoked salmon! This looks great and such a quick and easy meal! How awesome to have such a great friend for a lifetime! 🙂

  41. Soni August 22, 2012 at 9:13 am #

    This salad looks beautiful!We love smoked salmon and would enjoy it on our table too :)Lovey guest post by your friend MJ!
    Good luck with the kitchen renovation 🙂

    • mj August 23, 2012 at 10:22 am #

      Thanks Soni! It’s been a crazy week, but I think everything is going to turn out great! 🙂

  42. Tessa August 22, 2012 at 7:59 am #

    Perfect for a hot summer day! I really like the addition of the capers in the cucumber salad. I’m trying that next time!

  43. Angie@Angie's Recipes August 22, 2012 at 7:38 am #

    I do enjoy a simple salad like this…esp. when it’s paired with smoked salmon!

  44. Ramona August 22, 2012 at 7:18 am #

    Nice to meet such a wonderful friend to you MJ! I love the photos from the 80’s… very cool. 🙂 I would love this meal anytime because it’s fresh, healthy and flavorful. Perfect way to start the guest posting week.

    • mj August 23, 2012 at 10:21 am #

      Thanks Ramona! I have to admit, that the picture of the four of us is one of my favorite pictures of all time! We had such a good time that morning! 🙂


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