It amazes me as a gardener how one year a particular crop can be right-on-the-money, only to be followed by a disastrous showing the following season. Last summer, I was able to put up a years supply of onions, braided lovingly in my laundry room, for all the world to see.
This year, my measly onions took months to germinate and when they finally did, were quite pitiful indeed. Even more pitiful than my onions were the fact that my new barn cats dug the few small onions up that had survived.
Whatever, onions. Whatever, cats. Get over yourself.
On the contrary to my pathetic onions, this year, my cucumbers have really flourished! Which is a good trade-up from last year’s harvest, which included all of a dozen small cucumbers who’s bitter taste was less-than-desirable.
Whatever, last year’s cucumbers. Get over yourself.
This year’s cucumbers, however, are the specimens that cucumber dreams are made of. Prolific, sweet, and moist. And did I mention prolific?
That means my harvest basket is always full of them. That means there’s lot of them. That means that we’ve been eating them by the truck load. And that means I need more cucumber recipes in my repertoire.
Oh, hello Cucumber Salad with Mint. Welcome to the party!
And speaking of parties, have you checked out Meal Plans yet? It’s a planning party for Mamas everywhere!
Cucumber Salad with Mint
You will need:
– 1 1/2 pounds of cucumbers
– The juice of 1 lemon
– 3 tablespoons olive oil
– 1/2 cup cream (raw and organic is always best!)
– 1/4 cup mint leaves, minced
– Sea salt and pepper, to taste
1. Cut the cucumbers in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scoop out the seedy middle. This is, of course, an optional step but by removing the seeds, we’re not only improving the texture of the salad, but we’re also taking a lot of the liquid out so that it doesn’t become cucumber soup. I don’t bother peeling my cucumbers because they have a very crispy and thin flesh, but if yours are thick or bitter, feel free to peel the cucumbers.
You’re free. I give you permission. Peel and scoop away.
Don’t even think about throwing those seeds away. This is a farm, remember? Everything has value. Which is why I’m saving them in a bowl for my chickens… or my turkeys… or my rabbits…or my ducks… or my pigs. Whichever one I’m liking the most at the moment. (It’s usually the turkeys.)
2. Cut the cucumbers into thin slices, like so, and place into a serving bowl:
3. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, cream, and olive oil. Drizzle this over the cucumbers. Salt and pepper to taste.
4. Allow the cucumbers to marinade in the dressing for a bit. It gives the flavors time to marry. And married flavors are tasty flavors.
5. Before serving, add in the minced mint leaves, and gently toss. Add an extra grinding or two of fresh pepper – because it looks pretty, that’s why. So do it!
Sorry. I don’t mean to be bossy. But I like pretty dishes. Which is part of the reason I love this easy salad – the little flecks of bright green mint totally make me swoon.
Couple that with the fact that it’s a summer salad not dressed in mayonnaise (as so many of them are), it uses up extra cucumbers for the garden, is great on it’s own or on top of meat or sandwiches, and comes together in a few minutes, I’d say it’s a win.
Cucumber salad with mint for the win!
You get my point.
If cucumbers aren’t prolific this time of year in your garden, check out your local Farmer’s Market! There’s bound to be a grower or two near you. Support them – put money into their pockets so they can continue to farm and bring the world great produce.
I think that’s important.
Scratch that. I don’t just think it’s important, it IS important.
As is the fact that you need to make this cucumber salad.
(Shaye steps off her soap box.)
For other great meal ideas, no matter what your dietary restrictions, check out the meal planning service I use: Real Plans.
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