The cucumbers that are the basis for this light, uncooked soup are marinated before the broth or stock is added, giving the soup a greater depth of flavor. If you need to whip something up fast and have the ingredients on hand, you can forgo the marinade, but it won’t be as good. Broth or stock is a must here.

2 – 3 c peeled, thinly sliced cucumbers, seeded if necessary
2 T soy sauce
1 1/2 T rice vinegar, or white wine vinegar
4 T chopped scallion, divided
1/2 t sugar
1/2 – 1 t chili powder, or Korean chile powder
2 t dark (toasted) sesame oil
5 c chicken broth or vegetable stock
2 T toasted sesame seeds

1. Put the cucumbers (sliced in rounds or half moons) in a serving bowl. Add the soy sauce, vinegar, 1 T of the scallion, the sugar, chile powder, and sesame oil. Gently toss. Allow to marinate for one hour.

2. Add the broth or stock, stirring to combine. Chill, if you like, for an hour or so, or serve at room temperature. Sprinkle remaining scallion and the toasted sesame seeds on each bowlful.