How To Keep Cucumber Slices Crisp For Delicate Sandwiches

While you may associate cucumber sandwiches with Victorian Era Britain and posh tea parties, you're making a big mistake if you're not whipping up the delicate snack on a hot summer day. Per The Telegraph, the American Chemical Society name-checked cucumber sandwiches as being among the most effective foods for cooling oneself off. 

The reason cucumber sandwiches are such a great hot weather choice, according to ACS researcher Sara Risch, is that the chilled vegetable is incredibly hydrating due to its high water content. But with all that moisture comes the risk of sandwiches going from crisp to soggy in a matter of minutes. Some maintain that the secret to perfect cucumber sandwiches is to peel and scoop out the seeds. However, these techniques are both fairly work intensive and there is an easier way to achieve crisp and refreshing cucumber sandwiches – pre-salting the veggie slices.

20 minutes is all it takes to avoid soggy cucumber sandwiches

To avoid soggy cucumber sandwiches with little added prep time or effort, all you need to do is give them a quick salt. The reason this simple method works is due to osmosis, which draws out the veggie's excess water. Simply place your cucumber slices in a colander or lay them out on a kitchen or paper towel, sprinkle with a generous pinch of salt, and wait 20 minutes or so for the water to be drawn out. Once they've lost some liquid, pat the slices dry, and place on your sandwich.

While most of the salt will be washed away with the excess water as it drains out of the slices, it's worth noting this process will give your cucumbers some added saltiness; the longer you let them sit, the saltier they will be. If you prep your cucumbers far ahead of time, you may want to consider omitting any added salt from your recipe or decreasing the amount you would normally use to season your sandwich.