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Thai Basil Coconut Cucumber Salad

Let’s talk about the stuff of Summer.

thai salad

Reading a book outside on a lounge chair while sipping fresh squeezed lemonade. Getting just a little bit sunburnt… the type you can feel when you scrunch your nose. Barbecuing. Playing frisbee on the beach and getting sand everywhere no matter how hard you try to rinse it off. Sleeping with one leg out of the covers. The sound of sprinklers watering the lawn. Anything on a rooftop. Going for post-dinner walks. Spending time with friends and having a few cocktails on the patio. Roadtrips. Fresh produce, juicy fruits and light, refreshing meals.


What did I miss??

Probably lots of things…


But that’s the beauty of summer. There are so many things unique to this season. But if you blink, it will be gone before you know it and you’ll be saying, “where did the summer go?”

We had a hot weekend here in Toronto. I spent it doing many “summer things”. I barbecued twice. Lounged by the pool. Went to an outdoor concert. Had a few cocktails. Went to the market and made this dish.


This dish has a light refreshing flavour perfect for summer. There is minimal cooking required and it is served at room temperature which is a welcome attribute of any summer meal. If you want to lighten it up to serve it as a side dish, you could omit the rice noodles and/or tofu. As always, have fun with it and enjoy preparing the meal to suits your needs. Oh, and get outside and enjoy the stuff of Summer before it’s over.



Thai Basil Coconut Cucumber Salad

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 4-6 Servings


    For the Salad:
  • 1 english cucumber, chopped
  • 1 smallish red pepper, chopped
  • 3/4 cup red cabbage, shredded
  • 3/4 cup tofu, cubed
  • 1-2 tsp sesame oil
  • 3 green onions, sliced
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped + more for garnish
  • 2 cups arugula, rinsed
  • 1-2 cups rice noodles, cooked
  • 1/3 cup cashews, chopped, for garnish
  • For the Dressing:
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk (I used lite)
  • 2 tsp red curry paste
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • 1 tsp maple syrup or agave
  • 1/2 tsp sriracha (or your favourite hot sauce)
  • salt, to taste
  • red pepper flakes (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Toss tofu in sesame oil and a pinch of salt and arrange in an even layer on a baking sheet. Bake for 18-20 minutes, stirring once mid-way.
  2. Boil water and prepare your rice noodles according to package directions. Typically they take about 5 minutes to cook. Once cooked, rinse well with cold water and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Set aside while you prep your salad ingredients.
  4. Toss together all your salad ingredients with the dressing except for the cashews.
  5. Garnish with cashews, a sprig of basil and a slice of lime.


Adapted from Love and Lemons






1 Comment

  1. I love fresh summery salads. When it’s so hot out I never feel like eating hot meals and turning on the oven! Will try this out this week :)


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