Must Try: Shiitake and Cucumber Stir Fry

Shiitake and Cucumber Stir Fry

Course Side Dish
Cuisine Japanese
Keyword vegan
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 3 people
Author Connie Veneracion


  • 2 large cucumbers
  • 1 tablespoon rock salt plus more to complete the dish
  • 6 to 8 shiitake mushrooms (see notes after the recipe)
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 generous pinch ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seed oil
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine (I used mirin)
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds


  • Optionally, peel the cucumbers. Cut off the both ends and discard. 
  • Halve the cucumbers and scrape off the seeds with a teaspoon. 
  • Cut the deseeded cucumber halves into half inch slices.
  • Dump the cucumber slices into a bowl and sprinkle with a tablespoon of rock salt. Toss well. Leave to soak while you prep the mushrooms and garlic.
  • Cut off the mushroom stems and discard. Cut the caps into slices or quarters. What the shape should be is entirely up to you.
  • Peel the garlic, smash and chop.
  • Rinse the cucumber slices well and drain. Optionally, pass through a salad spinner to remove as much water as possible.
  • Heat the sesame seed oil in a wok or frying pan.
  • Throw in the mushrooms and sprinkle with about a quarter teaspoon of salt and pepper. Stir fry for about two minutes.
  • Add the cucumber slices and garlic. Stir fry for a minute.
  • Pour in the rice wine. Continue stir frying until the there's very little liquid left in the wok or frying pan.
  • Transfer the shiitake and cucumber stir fry to a platter or individual bowls. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds before serving.



If using dried shiitake, soak in warm water for 20 minutes or longer to rehydrate before cutting. The exact soaking time depends on the size of the mushrooms, specifically, the thickness of the caps.
This shiitake and cucumber stir fry is based on a recipe from NHK World-Japan.