Cucumber Carpaccio Salad

Real carpaccio is made with meat. Or fish. But definitely some kind of animal protein that is sliced paper thin, and served dressed simply with olive oil, a bit of acid, salt, pepper, and maybe some cheese.

It's one of those dishes that's brilliant in its elegance and simplicity.

Cucumber carpaccio is technically not a real carpaccio, but the idea is the same. Cucumber (and some peppers, here, too) sliced paper thin, dressed with olive oil, lemon, salt, pepper, a few herbs. And feta cheese.

It's easy, quick, delicate. A lovely sort of thing to enjoy on a quiet afternoon, or to set out before a larger meal. It's meant to be more of an idea than a recipe. Feel free to expand upon it. Switch out the citrus. Add other vegetables. Skip the cheese (or swap in something different).

Have fun with the plating. Dress it up like art. Like you're decorating a christmas tree or putting on make-up or arranging flowers.

It's simple, yes, but pretty. One of those dishes that's as lovely to look at as it is to eat.

Cucumber Carpaccio Salad
Serves 2-4 as a starter, 1 as a simple lunch

1 English cucumber, sliced thinly
1 red bell pepper, sliced thinly
1/4 medium red onion, sliced thinly
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, washed and patted dry
Extra-virgin olive oil
1 lemon, juiced
1/4 cup crumbled Greek or French feta cheese
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste

Arrange the cucumber, bell pepper, and onion slices in a single layer around a large platter. Tuck in the mint slices around the plate. Drizzle liberally with olive oil and the lemon juice. Sprinkle with feta and season with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

Serve immediately.

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