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bumper crop of cucumbers- any suggestions?

p
phoenikia Aug 9, 2008 06:24 PM

What are your favourite recipes? My cukes are quite large- too large to pickle.

I've also got lots of dill, basil, cilantro, arugula and jalapenos, so any recipes incorporating these ingredients would be great.

Thanks for any of your suggestions!

  1. Jennalynn Aug 9, 2008 06:29 PM

    I like a nice cucumber raita... with yogurt.

    Tastes great with fish.

    Try this one: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

    3 Replies
    1. re: Jennalynn
      MMRuth Aug 9, 2008 06:41 PM

      Yes - I make variations of that regularly - particularly good with salmon. I used to chop up the cucumber very fine pieces - now I often just grate it before letting it drain.

      Cucumber soup is great too - someone just posted about that earlier tonight.

      1. re: Jennalynn
        janetofreno Aug 10, 2008 12:11 AM

        My raita contains jalapenos instead of the cayenne, and cilantro instead of mint. So that fufills two other of the OPs requested ingredients!

        1. re: janetofreno
          p
          phoenikia Aug 10, 2008 09:12 AM

          Sounds delicious- thank you!

      2. t
        torty Aug 9, 2008 06:48 PM

        2 things come to mind. One is a quick pickle that works with larger guys- just halve (seed a bit if really seedy) and slice between 1/8 and 1/4", add sliced onions to taste, salt lightly, sugar generously (or Splenda), pepper, top with vinegar or choice and let sit a few days. I literally eat this breakfast, lunch and dinner during the season. Second is good old fashioned cucumber salad- mandoline or otherwise thin slice, salt, drain liquid, sprinkle with sugar, stir in yogurt or sour cream. Pepper and or paprika is nice. Big spoonfuls on toasted baguette, alongside any meal- good stuff. Will keep at least 4 days.

        1 Reply
        1. re: torty
          Morganna Aug 11, 2008 05:50 AM

          I was gonna recommend this but you beat me to it. YUM! :)

        2. p
          phoenikia Aug 9, 2008 07:13 PM

          Thanks for all the great suggestions so far. I'm going to give the raita a try- will probably also make tzatziki at some point in the next couple weeks. The quick pickle sounds delicious, too. Will let you know how that goes;)

          Does anyone have any favourite dairy-free or vegan recipes they'd like to share? Most of the cucumber salad and soup recipes I have use a fair amount of yogurt, sour cream or buttermilk. I'm trying to drop a few pounds so I've been trying to limit my dairy lately;)

          My favourite old-school cucumber salad is a Hungarian recipe from Molly O'Neill's New York Cookbook- using fresh dill, dijon mustard, wine vinegar, olive oil and paprika. It's always a hit at my dinner parties, and tastes even better the next day!

          1 Reply
          1. re: phoenikia
            h
            HillJ Aug 10, 2008 12:53 PM

            cucumber smoothies are lowfat & very refreshing
            cold cucumber soup can be thicked with vegetable broth to lower calories
            roasted cucumbers with olive oil, onions and zucchini is a nice side dish
            cucumbers added to rice, couscous, cold pasta salad
            enjoy your bounty!

          2. goodhealthgourmet Aug 9, 2008 08:07 PM

            GHG's Coban Salatasi [Turkish Shepherd's Salad]

            4 medium tomatoes
            1 medium cucumber [seedless, if available]
            1 medium-size mild onion [i prefer red or bermuda]
            2 large jarred pepperoncini [banana peppers]*
            6 tablespoons olive oil
            2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
            1 teaspoon dried oregano
            juice of half a lemon [1-2 tablespoons]
            kosher salt
            fresh cracked black pepper
            1 large handful flat leaf parsley

            grated mizithra cheese or crumbled feta cheese for serving

            Halve the tomatoes, squeeze gently [don't crush them!] to remove the seeds, and discard seeds. Peel cucumber, and slice in half, lengthwise. If cucumber contains seeds, remove them by scraping gently with a spoon, & discard seeds. Dice the tomato, onion & cucumber, and combine in a large bowl. Remove & discard the stems from the pepperoncini, chop the peppers very finely, and add to the other vegetables.

            In a separate bowl, whisk together olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, and oregano; season dressing to taste with salt & pepper.

            Pour dressing over vegetables, toss well, and allow to sit, refrigerated, for at least 30 minutes [the longer, the better].

            When ready to serve, roughly chop the parsley and sprinkle over salad [don't toss - i prefer to allow each diner to mix it into their serving after it's plated].

            Serve with cheese on the side [i always stir 1-2 tablespoons into my serving].

            Enjoy!

            *Note: traditionally, this salad contains green bell peppers, but i can't eat them raw. if you don't like the bite from the pepperoncini and you're okay with green peppers, feel free to omit the pepperoncini, and add 1 cored, seeded & diced medium green pepper.

            You could play around with the seasonings a little to use up some of your herbs - maybe omit the oregano & toss in some dill, or try using cilantro instead of parsley. Get creative :)

            1 Reply
            1. re: goodhealthgourmet
              p
              phoenikia Aug 10, 2008 09:14 AM

              thanks goodhealthgourmet...

            2. m
              mlgb Aug 9, 2008 08:36 PM

              Another one similar to your Hungarian one is thinly sliced cukes, sweet onions,red wine vinegar, dill, and salt. No oil.

              Also you can saute thickly sliced and seeded cukes in a little butter ..yummy. Or if you're watching the calories, I would think steaming them would work well also.

              2 Replies
              1. re: mlgb
                p
                phoenikia Aug 10, 2008 09:15 AM

                Will try out the no oil approach for the salad.
                Haven't tried sauteeing cukes, but it looks like I've got enough to try all these recipes. Thanks.

                1. re: mlgb
                  Jennalynn Aug 10, 2008 03:03 PM

                  Add a little sugar and you've got my Grandmother's Hungarian cucumber salad.

                2. Boccone Dolce Aug 9, 2008 08:40 PM

                  I made a couscous salad the other night that we all enjoyed (well, except my husband) - I chopped celery really small, and split grape tomatoes, and diced cucumbers, lots of fresh parsley, 1 raw garlic clove, olive oil, rice wine vinegar, S&P.
                  It was great the next day (I seeded the cukes I guess is why it wasn't all watery and gross).
                  I use the tip of a teaspoon, run it down the peeled cut-in-half cuke to seed, then slice, sprinkle with rice wine vinegar and serve.

                  1. FoodFuser Aug 9, 2008 08:45 PM

                    Those big cukes do a great job in the juicer. The juice can be frozen. Every item you mention could be mixed in to the juicer with the cukes, although the basil strikes my palate pretty harsh when juiced.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: FoodFuser
                      p
                      phoenikia Aug 10, 2008 09:19 AM

                      I wish I had a juicer!
                      What do you do with the cucumber juice- do you drink it straight?

                      1. re: phoenikia
                        FoodFuser Aug 10, 2008 09:04 PM

                        Start with reading recipes for gazpacho... cucumber is the key.

                    2. vickib Aug 9, 2008 10:59 PM

                      I recently made a cucumber agua fresca that was wonderful.
                      2-3 cukes will probably make a 1/2 gallon
                      along with:
                      juice of 4 limes
                      simple syrup to taste
                      1 quart water (or to taste)
                      Pinch of salt
                      You'll also need some cheesecloth, a blender or food mill, and a strainer.

                      Scrub the cukes, leaving the skins on. Cut into 1" chunks. Put the pieces into the blender along with a good 1/2 cup to cup of water and some of the lime juice. (You'll need to do this in batches) Puree until liquefied. Strain through the cheesecloth into a big bowl. When all your blending and straining is finished, sweeten to taste with simple syrup and all a little salt. Add more water if needed. This will keep a couple of days in the fridge.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: vickib
                        p
                        phoenikia Aug 10, 2008 09:13 AM

                        Just bought some limes- so I'm hoping to try this really soon. Thanks for the suggestion;)

                        1. re: phoenikia
                          kare_raisu Aug 10, 2008 09:18 PM

                          this cuke agua fresca is amazing - my favorite

                      2. susancinsf Aug 10, 2008 08:22 AM

                        I've been getting huge armenian cucumbers in my CSA boxes several weeks running, and to me, particularly if you want non-diary and have some cilantro, cucumber means JanetofReno's Kachumber salad, with the addition of some chopped cucumber to her recipe below (cilantro is a garnish):

                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5186...

                        the other salad I made this week was similar to some of the ones mentioned: chop the cucumber (by the way, one of the great things about armenian cucumbers is that you don't need to peel them; just wash thoroughly); add some chopped red onion, a few chopped leaves of fresh basil, and mix with a dressing of olive oil, a splash of basalmic vinegar, plain yogurt, salt and pepper....(sorry I can't tell you proportions since I made it up as I went along, but very little olive oil and even less vinegar, plus enough yogurt to cover but not enough to make it very heavy)...very tasty and refreshing.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: susancinsf
                          p
                          phoenikia Aug 10, 2008 09:14 AM

                          Thanks susancisf, both ideas sound great.

                        2. c
                          chowmel Aug 10, 2008 12:44 PM

                          Cucumber in sour cream. I use low fat sour cream. Salt thin sliced cukes and onions and let sit a few hours. Rinse. You should still taste some salt. Squeeze out liquid. Add pepper and sour cream - let sit a few hours before eating.

                          Also I like to make a filling similar to potstickers - minced shrimp and ground pork, some garlic and ginger. Cut cukes in half lengthwise, remove seeds. fill with meat and steam.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: chowmel
                            p
                            phoenikia Aug 10, 2008 01:29 PM

                            The steamed stuffed cukes sound delish!

                            1. re: chowmel
                              goodhealthgourmet Aug 10, 2008 03:34 PM

                              i'm with phoenikia, i like the sound of those steamed, stuffed cukes. chowmel, how long do you steam them? of course you'd need to do it sufficiently long for the filling to cook, but i'd be worried about the cukes getting soggy or mushy...

                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                h
                                HillJ Aug 10, 2008 04:12 PM

                                just thinking....cucumber tea sandwiches are light and delish.

                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                  c
                                  chowmel Aug 11, 2008 08:59 AM

                                  I cook until the filling is done. The cukes don't get soggy. I checked the recipe I used and it says to cook for 20 min. I don't think mine cook all that long. But do use the larger, slightly overgrown cukes. I dust the cukes with a little cornstarch to help the filling stick, not really necessary. I've also done it where I cut the whole cuke in 2-3 inch pieces and cored them out so I had a cylinder. Then I stuffed and steamed.

                                  1. re: chowmel
                                    goodhealthgourmet Aug 11, 2008 01:09 PM

                                    great, thanks fro the explanation. the cukes i have right now are pretty small, but when i have some big, fat ones on hand i'll give it a try.

                              2. jenwee Aug 10, 2008 03:26 PM

                                My mom and I would always make a sandwich with cream cheese, sliced cucumbers, alfala sprouts, raisins and sunflower seeds. :) Sometimes we would add avacado too

                                1. s
                                  Sherri Aug 10, 2008 03:34 PM

                                  I do a quick saute of chopped (peeled if necessary) cucumber pieces & scallions tossed w/ fresh dill. It's particularly nice with salmon.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: Sherri
                                    b
                                    brendastarlet Aug 10, 2008 04:38 PM

                                    I have a lovely recipe for a cucumber and green apple salad with cilantro and a honey vinaigrette. Peel the cukes and peel and core the green apples, and slice so that they both quite thin. Chop some cilantro to taste (some people don't like cilantro, and you can substitute dill or mint.) Make a vinaigrette with one part honey to two parts white vinegar, with a little salt. Once you've mixed the dressing, pour it over the salad, toss and serve.

                                    1. re: brendastarlet
                                      p
                                      phoenikia Aug 10, 2008 05:10 PM

                                      Like the sound of this recipe, and I have green apples on hand! Tomorrow night I'll give it a try!

                                      Tonight I made a variation of this avocado and cucumber soup: http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews..., adding jalapeno, increasing the basil and cucumber, and decreasing the oil, sour cream and Worcestershire. Also made a cucumber,dill, vinegar (white balsamic), sugar, salt, sweet paprika and onion salad with no oil, as suggested by some of the above posters.

                                      5 cucumbers used, and about a dozen to go, before I pick the next round!

                                      1. re: phoenikia
                                        b
                                        brendastarlet Aug 11, 2008 01:25 PM

                                        If you need to slice the green apples ahead of time, you can soak them in pineapple juice. It will keep them from going brown.

                                  2. v
                                    valerie Aug 11, 2008 10:45 AM

                                    A few variations of this sweet & sour cucumber salad with dill have been mentioned. I love this one...just add some thinly sliced red onion and make a lot -- it's addicting!

                                    http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                    1. s
                                      smtucker Aug 12, 2008 07:56 AM

                                      I made some quick Chinese Spicy Cucumber pickles last night. So good with a few pork dumplings! Recipe is from Yan's China, page 62 I think.....

                                      2 cucumbers
                                      1 tsp salt
                                      1/2 cup rice vinegar
                                      2 tbs soy sauce
                                      2 tbs sugar
                                      1-2 fresh red chilis

                                      Deseed [if not English] and slice very thin. I used a mandolin for this part. In a bowl, sprinkle the salt over the cucumbers, and mix. Allow to sit for 30 minutes.
                                      Mix remaining ingredients. I didn't have any fresh chili peppers, so I toasted 1 tsp of Szechuan peppers.
                                      Drain and dry the cucumbers. Mix all together. Chill for an hour. Serve.

                                      This was so simple and delicious, I am going to start trying other veggies with this pickling method.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: smtucker
                                        p
                                        phoenikia Aug 12, 2008 10:26 AM

                                        Sounds good- will give it a try with jalapenos instead of the fresh red chilis since that's what I have on hand;)

                                        1. re: smtucker
                                          p
                                          phoenikia Aug 15, 2008 06:21 AM

                                          The Chinese Spicy Cuke idea turned out really well..thanks for the inspiration.
                                          I didn't use any salt since the soy is already salty, and I was out of rice vinegar so I used white balsamic.

                                          My white balsamic, soy and jalapeno cucumber salad turned out delicious!. 2 tbsp sugar, 2 tbsp soy, 1/3 cup white balsamic, 1 minced jalapeno and 2 sliced cucumbers.

                                        2. hannaone Aug 12, 2008 08:52 AM

                                          A couple more suggestions -

                                          http://www.chow.com/recipes/11291

                                          http://www.chow.com/recipes/11544

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: hannaone
                                            p
                                            phoenikia Aug 12, 2008 10:26 AM

                                            Thanks hannaone!

                                          2. Megiac Aug 12, 2008 11:20 AM

                                            When I have an excess of cukes, I like to make a chilled cucumber and dill soup or saute them. To saute them I quarter them legthwise, remove the seeds and then cut into 1/2-1' pieces, toss them in flour, and then saute in olive oil until crisp-tender. Then, I just squeeze them with a bit of lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste.

                                            1. r
                                              Rizza Aug 12, 2008 11:43 AM

                                              Cucumber Salsa
                                              3 cups diced cucumber
                                              3/4 cup diced white onion
                                              1-2 jalapenos diced
                                              juice of 1-2 limes
                                              olive oil
                                              cilantro
                                              1 large heirloom tomato, chopped
                                              salt and pepper
                                              mix together, serve with corn chips - so yummy!

                                              The quantities can be altered to your liking. This has been very popular when I bring it to parties.

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