We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
I love cucumbers from my garden in the summertime. I harvested my first few this weekend.
Is anything more refreshing than a hot cucumber fresh off the vine?
I guess I prefer them as a dominant component, and not as a minor ingredient. Mixing tomato with cucumber is an insult to Mr. Cucumber - except in a Greek tomato, cucumber and feta cheese salad - which is hardly a salad. More like a fine simple plate of food, with olive oil drizzled over it.
Cucumber sandwich: 2 or three 1/4 to 1/2 inch-thick lengthwise slices of peeled cucumber - try to minimize the seeds. Sprinkle a little salt. Put on bread with some mayo. This version is definitely not a lady's tea sandwich.
Cucumber and onion salad: My Granny made this all the time in the summer. Sometimes with shrimp in it as a light lunch, but I like it plain. I don't think she used the oil, but maybe she did. I make it without oil and with the clear-colored vinegar, sugar to taste, and definitely let it sit in the icebox an hour or so to absorb the flavor.
Yet another cucumber slaw: A favorite. Peel and seed them. Shred in Cuisinart. Always drain shredded cukes in a colander with a bit of salt and some weight on top for 20 minutes before making slaw or it gets too watery. Shred some carrots too. Toss together in a vinaigrette with a little salt and pepper. Really nice with lobster and fish, but also terrific with barbecue.
Cucumbers are good without any seasoning. Eat them like an apple or a whole carrot- after peeling, of course.
I also like combining cucumbers with an olive oil-vinegar-soy sauce-garlic mixture. A little of each. Suggested per cucumber: 1tsp olive oil, 1 TB vinegar, dash of soy sauce, 1 crushed garlic clove. For those who love garlic.
Agreed that cucumbers in salads do just fine without any other companion vegetable.
A woman loved growing tomatoes, but couldn’t seem to get her tomatoes to turn very red. One day, while taking a stroll, she came upon a gentlemen neighbor who had the most beautiful garden full of huge red tomatoes. The woman asked the gentlemen, "What do you do to get your tomatoes so red?"
The gentlemen responded, "Well, twice a day I stand in front of my tomato garden and expose myself, and my tomatoes turn red from blushing so much."
Well, the woman was so impressed, she decided to try doing the same thing to her own tomato garden to see if it would work. Twice a day for two weeks she exposed herself to her garden, hoping for the best.
One day the gentlemen was passing by and asked the woman, "By the way, how did you make out? Did your tomatoes turn red?"
"No," she replied, "but my cucumbers are enormous!"
My favorite hot-weather sandwich (on a good roll, such as a real Kaiser roll -- something crusty on the outside and voluptuous on the inside):
- slices of Cheshire cheese (reputed to once have been the most popular cheese in the English-speaking world, it is hard to find nowadays. It's worth the search, and there really is no subsitute)
- cucumber slices (I prefer the English -- no gas from them)
- a great heap of watercress
Excellent with a cup or two of good black coffee on the side.
Definitely not the polite watercress-and-cucumber sandwich beloved of polite luncheons. This one tends to get messy and fall apart. It doesn't matter. That's all part of the joy of it.