The cucumber is nothing new. It has been well known in India and Egypt for at least 4,000 years. The cucumber is a very unique vegetable in several ways. For one cucumbers have an especially high water content. The high water content (96%) keeps the calories low at about 14 calories per 100 grams. In addition it has a lot of wonderful nutrients mostly found in the water. A cucumber has about 3g carbohydrate, 0.8g protein and 0.1g fat. In addition cucumbers are rich in potassium.
Although there are many tasty recipes for cucumbers our favorite way to enjoy it is plain. First we peel the thick skin off and slice it and then enjoy. This is one of our favorite salad vegetables. To give you a few more ideas see the hints below.
Cucumber goes well with cream, sour cream, yogurt, cheese (Gruyère, cantal, bleu d’Auvergne and goat cheese), and herbs (dill, mint, basil and chives)
Use as “chips” when peeled and sliced in all types of dips. Great with hummus!
Cucumber salad with fresh dill, lemon juice and olive oil: add some thinly-sliced fried onions on top for a pleasing combination of textures; for a quick lunch, you can add a can of tuna and serve on a bed of lettuce leaves.
Make cucumber ribbons to wrap shrimps or prawns.
Cucumber spaghetti – create thin “noodles” on a mandolin. Make a dressing of oil, vinegar, Dijon mustard, dill, shallot and maple syrup.
Though usually served raw, cucumber can be cooked: gratinéd in the oven, or stuffed with cooked chicken, herbs, raisins and curry.
Steam it and serve it with roast turbot in saffron sauce.
Make a chervil cream soup, add finely chopped cucumber at the last minute, along with scallops or crab.
Simple Cucumber Salad
5 medium roma tomatoes, halved lengthwise, seeded, and thinly sliced
1/4 red onion, peeled, halved lengthwise, and thinly sliced
1 cucumber, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
A generous drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil, about 2 tablespoons
2 splashes red wine vinegar
Coarse salt and black pepper
Dress the tomatoes, onions, and cucumber with olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper.
Let rest for 20 minutes and enjoy!
Summer Garden Salad
- 2 or 3 ears corn (1 cup frozen if fresh is not available)
- 2 small cucumbers
- 3 tomatoes
- 1 small red onion
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 Tbsp. white wine vinegar or lemon juice
- 1 small clove garlic, minced (optional)
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- Basil, mint, cilantro, or parsley (optional)
- Shuck corn and cut off kernels and put in a large bowl. Peel, seed, and dice cucumbers, and add to bowl. Core and dice tomatoes, add to bowl. Dice onion and add to bowl.
- In a small bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar or lemon juice, garlic if you like, and salt. Pour over salad and toss to combine thoroughly.
- Mince herbs and use to garnish salad, if you like.