5 Recipes to Make the Most of Your Cucumber Harvest
Many of you who have started gardens are undoubtedly wondering what to do with all of your summer’s bounty.
Aside from enjoying them fresh from the garden, cucumbers can add a fresh taste to your favorite salads, sauces, and dips. As well, you can enjoy the health benefits that cucumbers bring. They have an abundance of health benefits ranging from re-hydrating the body, providing a decent amount of vitamin B, providing 10% of your daily amount for vitamin C, helps with hangovers, arthritis, weight loss and more.
If you have an abundance of cucumbers, look no further. These five delicious recipes will soon become favorites among your household.
DELI-STYLE FERMENTED CUCUMBERS
(Makes 6-quart jars)
- 3/4 pickling spice
- 2 to 3 bunches fresh dill, divided
- 10 lbs. pickling cucumbers, trimmed
- 1 1/2 cups pickling or canning salt
- 2 cups white vinegar
- 32 cups water
- 6 garlic cloves
- In a large clean crock or glass or stainless steel container, place half of the pickling spice and one bunch of dill. Add cucumbers, leaving at least 4 inches of space between cucumbers and rim of the container.
- In a large stainless steel pot, combine pickling salt, vinegar, and water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve salt. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
- Ladle pickling liquid over cucumbers to cover. Place remaining dill and pickling spices over the top. Add garlic, if using. Place a large clean inverted plate on top of cucumbers and weigh down with two or three-quart jars filled with water and capped. Cover with a clean heavy towel. Let stand in a cool place for about 3 weeks, until cucumbers are well flavored with dill and clear throughout. Every day, remove any scum that has formed. During fermentation, gas bubbles will form. When bubbling ceases, fermentation is complete.
To Can Pickles:
- Prepare canner, jars, and lids.
- Drain pickles, reserving brine. Set pickles aside. Strain brine into a large stainless steel pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and boil gently for 5 minutes.
- Pack pickles into hot jars to a generous 1/2 inch of the top of the jar. Ladle hot pickling liquid into jar to cover pickles, leaving 1/2 headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace, if necessary, by adding hot pickling liquid. Wipe rim. Center lid on the jar. Screw band down until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip tight.
- Place jars in canner, ensuring they are completely covered with water. Bring to a boil and process for 15 minutes. Remove canner lid and wait 5 minutes to remove jars. Cool and store.
Source: Ball’s Complete Book of Home Preserving
(Makes 8 servings)
- 4 cup peeled, seeded, and thinly sliced cucumbers
- 2 teaspoons season salt
- 1 1/2 cups Greek yogurt
- 1 1/2 cups mayonnais
- 2 tablespoons finely grated sweet onion
- 1 1/2 tablespoons grated garlic
- 3/4 cups fresh basil, chopped finely
- 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 1/4 cups fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoons sugar
- salt and pepper to taste
- Toss together the cucumbers and salt and drain in a colander for 30 minutes.
- Whisk together the yogurt and remaining ingredients. Stir in cucumbers; allow to stand for 30 minutes.
- Refrigerate for up to 2 days.
- Serve on our favorite salad.
FETA CUCUMBER DIP
(Makes 3 cups)
- 2 cucumbers (1 1/2 pounds)—halved, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch diced
- 6 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
- 2 cups Greek Yogurt (we use Fage)
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 cup finely chopped mint
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh dill, finely chopped
- 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic, finely minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- Cut cucumber in half, lengthwise. Use a spoon to scrape out the seeds then discard them. Grate cucumber.
- Scatter grated cucumber over a clean dishcloth (or paper towels). Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Allow to sit at least 10 minutes. Then, gather up the corners of the dishcloth and squeeze as much liquid from grated cucumber as possible.
- In a medium bowl, combine squeezed cucumber with yogurt, lemon juice, chopped herbs, garlic and the feta cheese. Season with 3/4 teaspoon of salt then taste and adjust as necessary with more salt. (We used about 1 1/4 teaspoons).
- Cover and refrigerate 2 to 4 hours to develop flavor.
- Serve with toasted pita bread, pita chips, crackers or as a sandwich spread.
ASIAN CUCUMBER SALAD
(Makes 3-4 servings)
- 2 medium cucumbers, peeled, seeded and thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
- 1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger
- Peel cucumbers, remove seeds and slice the cucumbers in half lengthwise
- Place in a double layer of paper towel and squeeze gently to remove any excess moisture.
- Combine vinegar, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl, stirring to dissolve. Add the cucumbers and sesame seeds; toss well to combine. Serve immediately.
(Makes 2 1/2 liters)
- 2-liter Sprite or Gingerale
- 1 cucumber, thinly sliced
- 1 can (12 oz.) frozen/slightly thawed limeade
- In a large pitcher, add all ingredients and stir gently. Refrigerate and allow flavors to develop – about 1 hour.
- Serve cold with ice.
Tess Pennington is the author of The Prepper’s Blueprint, a comprehensive guide that uses real-life scenarios to help you prepare for any disaster. Because a crisis rarely stops with a triggering event the aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life. The well-rounded, multi-layered approach outlined in the Blueprint helps you make sense of a wide array of preparedness concepts through easily digestible action items and supply lists.
Tess is also the author of the highly rated Prepper’s Cookbook, which helps you to create a plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply and includes over 300 recipes for nutritious, delicious, life-saving meals.
Visit her web site at ReadyNutrition.com for an extensive compilation of free information on preparedness, homesteading, and healthy living.
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