Use dark skinned, long, tender cucumbers, which have hardly any seeds.
Halve the cucumber lengthwise. Slice off end with a diagonal cut.
Keeping the same angle, make paper-thin slices, taking care not to cut all the way through. Make seven to nine slices in each group.
Hold the cucumber piece skin-side down and cut the skin away from the flesh, starting at the end where the skin was not sliced.
Cut along the skin until there is about one centimetre left. Leave this part uncut.
Turn the cucumber over and bend every second slice back to the joined ends, leaving the alternate slices straight.
Place in a large bowl of iced water and leave for several hours or longer. The skin will lift away from the flesh.
This spectacular garnish can be used to decorate platters of kebabs.
For lemon twists:
Slice a lemon thinly; place each slice flat and make a cut into the centre of the slice. Hold the slice in the fingers of both hands - placed on each side of the cut - then twist in opposite directions.
Two or three slices can be placed on top of one another or twisted together to give a double or triple effect.
Lemon twists can be used as a garnish for almost any dish.
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