Authentic Thai Cucumber Salad

You know the stuff.  You get it in teeny tiny bowls at your favorite Thai joint.  Then you order a huge plate of it for two bucks and some change because you can't get enough and your lunch date ate most of it anyway.  It's tangy, sour and sweet and now you want some.  This satisfying side dish is easy to throw together and it costs next to nothing.  Here is what you need:

Authentic Thai Cucumber Salad
1 Large Cucumber
1/2 Small Red Onion
1/4 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Rice Wine Vinegar
1/4 Bunch Fresh Cilantro
1 Serrano Chili Pepper
1 Jalapeno Pepper
Sea Salt
Roasted Peanuts (for garnish, optional)

Begin by peeling cucumber.  Slice lengthwise and remove seeds using a spoon.  Slice thinly and set in a collander.  Next slice onion thinly and add to collander.  Cut peppers in half and remove white ribs and seeds.  Dice these finely and add to collander.  Sprinkle mixture with a generous amount of sea salt, toss with a spoon and set aside for 30 minutes (put a plate underneath to catch the liquid the salt will draw out of the mixture).  

Now rinse mixture thoroughly with cold water and shake off excess liquid, squeezing or you could spin it in a salad spinner.  In a large glass bowl, add sugar and vinegar.  Allow sugar to dissolve and add cucumber mixture.  

Stir to combine and add finely chopped cilantro.  Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.  Sprinkle with chopped roasted peanuts, if desired.

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