Saturday, October 18, 2008

Surplus "Squash"

I was at Union Square this weekend juggling an armload of red pepper, squash and cucumbers when a lady stopped me and said "that's a lot of zucchini." But look close, that's only three zucchini. The other six? Persian cucumbers.
As a child, I was always a pickle eater but hated cucumbers and related fruits, like tomatoes, for the longest time because of their watery, slimy seeds. It wasn't until I was in high school that I learned how to scoop the seeds out of your standard cuke. For some reason, I don't remember the English or seedless variety being available back then. But once I started life in my own kitchen, and using Fresh Direct, I discovered the Persian cucumber. Crunchy, sweet and compact -- easy to use up all in one sitting so none is left moldering in the crisper.
My Fresh Direct days are long over (because of the increasing price of Fresca, but that's a story for another day), but thanks to Oak Grove's green house growing, I have at least a few more Persian cucumber days...
Savory Cucumber Yogurt Salad
While most of my Persian cukes end up in salads, I do like this savory yogurt dish alongside Indian curries or a Trader Joe's Vegetable Masala burger.
1 Persian cucumber, peeled and shredded
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 c. red onion, finely diced
1/2 c. Greek-style yogurt (I use Trader Joe's brand 2% Greek Yogurt)
1 t. cilantro (optional)
Other spices (I like a dash of Penzey's Turkish spice blend)
Pile shredded cucumber in a kitchen towel or small strainer, squeeze out all the liquid you can. Combine shredded cucumber, minced garlic, red onion and yogurt. Season liberally with salt and pepper and an other spices desired. Chill for at least 30 minutes to let flavors combine. Use as is or use as a sandwich spread, dip or topping for spicy food.

1 comment:

Teacher Center said...

Love this blog - so clever and inspirational!