Salt pickled cucumber, seaweed and sweet vinegar dressing are a classic Japanese combination and adding white crab meat and samphire creates a lovely light lunch or starter. If you prefer to leave out the crab, you’ll still have a wonderful salad.
Cut the cucumber in half lengthways and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Slice the cucumber thinly, put the slices in a large bowl and sprinkle with the salt. Mix well with your hands and leave for 10 minutes.
Cut the seaweed into 1.5cm length and put these in a small bowl. Pour lukewarm water over the seaweed, enough to cover, and leave for 10 minutes.
In another small bowl, mix the lemon juice with the crab meat and add the pepper, keep to one side.
Blanch the samphire in boiling water for 1 minute. Drain it, cool in cold water, and then pat dry with kitchen paper.
Prepare the dressing by heating the rice wine vinegar and sugar in a small pan until the sugar has dissolved. Add the soy sauce and water, and let it cool.
By now, the cucumber should be ready, Using your hands, squeeze out the salty liquid, and put the cucumber in a bowl. Drain the water from the seaweed and lightly squeeze out more water, again using your hands.
Add the seaweed and samphire to the cucumber. Pour half of the dressing over and toss well with your hand.
Divide individual portions into shallow bowls, and then share the crab between them, placing it on top of each salad. Pour the remaining dressing over and garnish with spring onions and optional ginger.