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Cuke Overload

August 6, 2008

Remember all those cucumbers I picked in my garden? Well, they keep coming. Plus, we’ve been getting a steady one, two or three cukes in our CSA share each week. All of which is to say, I’ve had to find a few new interesting things to do with my cuke overload.

In my garden, I’m growing pickling cucumbers. This is the first year I’ve tried my hand at growing cucumbers, and though I’m still getting a handle on how quickly they go from pinky-finger sized babies to fat bumpy monsters, overall, we’re really enjoying them. We have enough to slice on salads almost every night, but with the pile I brought home last week, I decided to make refrigerator dill pickle chips! They’re not ready to eat yet…should be really interesting when I crack open the jar, seeing as this is the first time I’ve made them. Ooh, how I love a crunchy, garlicky dill pickle. I hope these are good, because I am envisioning them as a burger topping.

The other thing I’ve made: chilled cucumber soup. This recipe (from Ellie Krieger) is *perfect* for a night when you have about 10 minutes to prepare something, and/or it’s too darn hot to lift a finger. Well, okay, you’ll still need to lift your finger, but pretty much only to press the “on” button on your blender. Cucumbers, yogurt, fresh dill, a scallion, salt and pepper are blitzed together to make a deliciously tart, creamy, cool soup. So pretty garnished with some diced tomato and sprig of dill…

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Cool Cucumber Soup

Adapted from Ellie Krieger

View printable recipe

I’m currently without a blender, but used a food processor to prepare this and it worked just fine. You can’t get quite as fine a texture as you can with a blender, but it still tastes delicious. One other note: the original recipe recommends using nonfat yogurt; I actually used full fat because that was what I had on hand. Of course it tasted delicious. : )

Ingredients

3 cups plain yogurt
1 pound cucumbers (about 2 medium salad cucumbers, or 1 large English cucumber), cut into chunks
1 scallion, white and green parts, coarsely chopped (about 1/4 cup)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, plus sprigs for garnish
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 medium tomato (about 5 ounces), diced
2 teaspoons olive oil (optional)

Directions

Place the yogurt, cucumber, scallion, and dill in the bowl of a blender or food processor. Pulse until pureed. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed, then ladle into bowls and serve garnished with chopped tomato, a sprig of dill, and a drizzle of olive oil if you like.

Serves 4.

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13 Comments leave one →
  1. August 6, 2008 7:02 am

    Cucumbers seem like one of those things that are really difficult to find anything to do with besides eat raw, so I would love to hear more of your culinary inventions with the cucumber! I would imagine that I would end up eating lots of cucumber sandwiches.

    We made pickles last summer, and they were delicious and way easier than we thought. I recently tried a cumin dill pickle, and I’m all about trying it myself. They were delicious!

  2. August 6, 2008 8:14 am

    Just picked up a big batch of cucumbers at my farmer’s market yesterday so I’ll have to give this refreshing soup a try. Not sure if you have run across the book “Wild Fermentation” by Sandor Katz – it might be right up your alley – I am using his recipe to ferment the cucumbers – we’ll see how the experiment goes.

  3. August 6, 2008 9:02 am

    Have you tried other cuke recipes like japanese cuke salad (check my recipe archives on URB)? Just thoughts to use them up. I like this recipe a lot, but I don’t have cuke overload like you do, lady! I pay premium price for persian cukes here :( If only I had a Trader Joes. I bet you miss TJs too?

  4. August 6, 2008 10:13 pm

    I’m curious to know how you made the pickles. Did you use a pickling mix? I recently blogged about fresh dill pickle spears – they were yummy and super easy and ready to eat the next day (check it out if you like). My kids loved them. My cucumbers were plowed to the ground by a groundhog in the garden but our CSA farmer is having a great cuke year. I’ll have to try the soup!

  5. August 7, 2008 7:34 am

    That soup looks fabulous! I am going to have to try it. Yummy.

  6. August 7, 2008 7:35 am

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  7. August 7, 2008 3:41 pm

    Amy: Pretty soup! I can’t seem to get excited about big bowls of cold soup, but I think they’d be fun as a little appetizer in shot glasses. And the pickles! I’m excited to hear how they turn out. I’d like to try that.

  8. August 7, 2008 7:01 pm

    Looks tasty! I trust you’ll be posting the pickle recipe when the time is right?

  9. August 7, 2008 8:43 pm

    laura – ooh, cumin dills sound great. Yum! I’ll try to post some more cucumber ideas as I try them. )

    sue bette — what an interesting idea…I can’t wait to hear how those come out! Will you be blogging about them? I haven’t come across that book but it sounds intriguing.

    Jen – you bet. Ooh, and your cucumber salad looks *fabulous.* That is next on my list, for sure — I love rice vinegar on cucumbers. Oh, man. My stomach is grumbling thinking about this.

    Deanna – your pickles look easier than mine…this being my first pickle experience, I used a recipe in a cookbook on preserving…they have fresh dill heads, white vinegar, a garlic clove, a slice of red pepper, and mustard seeds. I’ll blog about them when I try them!

    Katie – enjoy!

    Sammie – thanks! I’ll check it out.

    Kristin – great idea. Yes, I’m excited to see how they’ll turn out — I’ll let you all know! :)

    Alex – see above :) yes, I will!

  10. August 7, 2008 9:02 pm

    Good choices with the cukes. They look refreshing and more than edible :)

  11. August 7, 2008 9:18 pm

    We love cucumbers over here. It’s actually one of the only vegetables my 4 1/2 year old son will eat. He’d get a kick out of cucumber soup for sure! :)

  12. August 8, 2008 1:45 am

    I looooove cucumber soup! This sounds wonderful!

  13. August 8, 2008 2:56 pm

    I’m trying this tonight! I just adore cucumbers. I often make fattoush with them. Mmmm…

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