Week 7’s One Straw Farm CSA share brought the color as well as an increasing variety of textures, shapes, and flavors. Despite the heat, the kitchen was a fun place to be this week. We got red chard, cucumbers, pickling cucumbers, yellow squash, potatoes, purple basil, purple spring onions, kale, and—surprise, surprise—sugar snap peas!
You might recall that last week’s featured recipe was caldo verde and have noticed by now that Week 7’s produce lends itself very well to making that dish. Go for it—it’s scrumptious! (You can always freeze the soup if eating hot soup in 100° weather isn’t your thing.) This post, however, is devoted to the totally tubular cuke. (Did you know that the cucumber is the fourth most widely cultivated veg in the world?) The handful of pickling cucumbers fairly screamed, “pickle me!” If you’ve never pickled anything before, either because pickling seems like a lot of work or because you’ve just never had the opportunity, now’s your chance. And the other slicing cucumbers, well, show me a cucumber in summertime that wouldn’t be happier united with slivers of onion all swimming together happily in a bowl of vinegar. Both recipes listed below are super quick and easy to make with huge payoffs for your palette.
Homemade Refrigerator Dill Pickles
Ready in 24 hours (only ~10 minutes actual prep time); makes 4–6 servings
- 1-quart jar with a lid
- 2–3 pickling cucumbers (any veggie can be substituted)
- 5 sprigs of fresh dill (or other herb)
- 2–4 cloves of garlic (or garlic scapes), minced
- 3 Tbsp white distilled vinegar
- ½–1 Tbsp kosher salt, to taste
- distilled or filtered water, enough to top off jar
- 20 black (or pink) peppercorns (optional)
- ¼ tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
- Cut pickles into discs, spears, or sandwich slices and add to the jar with all ingredients except the water.
- Once everything is in the jar, fill to the very top with distilled or filtered water and screw lid on very tightly. Shake the jar up to distribute flavors and leave on your countertop for 12 hours.
- Shake again and turn upside down for another 12 hours, making sure the lid is screwed on tightly to avoid leakage.
- After pickles have sat for a total of 24 hours, store in refrigerator (you can taste them first) and enjoy within a month for maximum freshness.
From DIY Natural
Cucumber Vinegar Salad
Ready in ~2 hours (only ~10 minutes actual prep time); makes 4–6 servings
- 3 cucumbers
- 1 red onion (or Vidalia)
- 1/2 cup white vinegar
- 1/2 cup water*
- 1/3 cup sugar*
- salt and pepper to taste*
*Omitting the last three ingredients altogether also works, in which case, just add enough vinegar to cover the veggies.
- Slice the onion and cucumber both thinly and add them to a salad bowl or other container.
- Pour the vinegar, water and sugar in a separate bowl and stir until all the sugar is dissolved. Add the salt and pepper and pour the mixture over the onion and cucumber slices. (If omitting last three ingredients on list, simply pour vinegar over veggies and mix.)
- Cover your bowl with a lid, a plate or some plastic wrap and store it in the fridge for at least 2 hours or until you are ready to serve. The longer it sits, the better it gets!
From Hillbilly Housewife