I can only eat so many salads, soups, pickles, and relishes. Besides tossing the excess to my hens, or selling the things on eBay, what can I do with them?
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Nancy is a trusted home cook.
Massive amounts of Tzatziki for your next barbecue or picnic or just eating?
Put a few slices in a cool pitcher of water ...somehow the water tastes fresher (I know, I know, this won't take care of many)
Some food banks take intact (not cut, not processed) fresh produce for distribution. Is that a possibility near you?
You could also take your kids/grandkids to the local weekend farmer's market and teach them some old fashioned entrepreneurialism.
Lisanne is a trusted home cook.
slice very thinly and put in cold drinks, like Pimm's cup, or lemonade.
Quick pickles (sugar, dill, sweet onion, vinegar from white grain vinegar, or white wine or rice, and water, salt, peppercorns
Salads: add to cabbage slaw with mashed garlic, minced dill, lemon juice, oil, salt, thinly sliced onion; Mediterranean chopped salad, or Tabbouli
PHIL is a trusted home cook.
Beisdes the good ideas already mentioned , If you make a few different salads you won't get bored. I made a fattoush that was great https://food52.com/recipes... . Cucumber spaghetti if you have a spiralizer. You can make shot glasses out of them for party. FIll them with vodka or gazpacho or some other filling. Also you can make cucumber vodka.
BerryBaby is trusted source on General Cooking
I like to hollow them out and stuff them with tuna or chicken salad.
Yes!!! Now I know where I will serve my next Salmon tartare:
Cold Persian summer soup of yogurt, white raisins, dill, minced garlic, pistachios, pomegranate arils: https://food52.com/recipes...
I would try to offload some of them to friends, neighbors, and colleagues.
Feeding them to the chickens is a great idea. Frankly, that sounds better than trying to figure out fifty ways to force them down my gullet until I can't stand the smell of them.
Eating small quantities of good things is more appealing to me than engorging myself on massive amounts of something. But that's just me...
I donate my surplus tomatoes to the local food pantry. They love receiving fresh produce. If you don't have a food pantry, contact local churches in your area. Many help families and support them with food and clothing. I'm sure you will make many people very happy.
As Nancy, and Berry Baby said donating them is best idea of all.
Filling with Tuna salad is a good idea. My ideas always seem to circle back to vodka
My grandmother used to make what she called freezer pickles... She'd heat a lightly sweet brine made with vinegar, sugar and spices, and very thinly slice the cucumbers and put them in plastic freezer bags. Then she would pour over the brine and freeze them flat (much like freezing sweet corn). I remember she would let the pickles defrost a little bit, before giving them to us. Eating the slushy, briny, sweet pickles was a thousand times better than a Popsicle on a hot summer day. They were so delicious, now i feel like I need to call my mother to ask her to give me the recipe. If she can find it, I will post it on here.
Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.
I love this idea. I hope your mom will share the recipe.
You've pretty much covered it, so I concur with donating. Do you drink? I agree cucumber vodka would be nice. Do you like spicy food? Cucumber kimchi is a pickling idea you may not have considered.
All great ideas, especially donating - I know you said you don't like pickles but there's the Japanese-style kind that's with brown rice vinegar, sugar, salt and those are easy to make and keep for a while.
Sandwiches. A really, really good white bread (something like Pain au Levain by Balthazar http://www.balthazarbakery...), a serious slather of great butter and thinly sliced cucumber with a sprinkle of salt. Which is the reason I can't keep cucumbers in the house, given the chance I would eat this sandwich for just about every meal in hot weather.
Pegeen is a trusted home cook.
I read in a British book of manners that the rule for making a proper cucumber sandwich was that the cukes had to be sliced so thin that you could read the newspaper through one.
Balthazar's commercial bakery (open to public) is 5 minutes from my house. Their baguettes are excellent too. I like Sullivan street bakery and Maison Keyser too.
When I come home from my CSA pickup with 10 cucumbers, I pull out the mandoline. Peel strips off the cukes, slice them thin. Put them in a colander, sprinkle with kosher salt, and let them sit at least 30 minutes (I toss them periodically and dump the salty cucumber water that drips out onto the plate).
Meanwhile, thin-slice an onion, throw it in a large bowl with pepper, about 2 tsp of sugar, and chopped fresh dill. Just barely cover with apple cider vinegar.
Mix the cucumbers into the onion mixture. Let sit for 10 minutes or so, then put in jars and into the fridge. Eat at will. (My son eats about a jar a week. The rest of us like a little as a side dish.)
I make a lot of gaspacho in the summer so that uses up quite a few cucumbers, in addition to cucumber salad and pickles, but definitely give some to your friends or donate to a local food pantry as someone suggested. Great ideas!
No great suggestions, just chiming in to say I feel your pain. Two days ago we had 34 pickling cukes in our fridge... And i don't like pickles. Giving them away is the way to go, since people are amazed at how much better garden fresh cukes taste than what they usually get in the store...
Sam is a trusted home cook.
Skin them and juice them in a blender. Strain the juice out.
You'll have a nice base for mixing with soda water and sugar.
Maybe some vodka or Pimms cup.
A pity to throw away the skins' vitamins and other phytonutrients. I'd put the chunks-with-skin into the Vitamix.
I just thought of something else. Using the juice idea with a sweetener strain it and freeze it and use spoon to scrap it up to make a Granita. Some mint infused simple sugar would be nice on that with a mint garnish.
Along those lines I just stumbled on this which looks interesting and refreshing. It was the title that got me - apparently it tastes like a mojito. With rum or without. http://www.health.com/food...
Might have to try this.
I have two answers: (1) Put a sign in your yard: "Cukes - - 3 for $1.00. You will be surprised at the response. (2) I found a "Bread & Butter" recipe on the net that was pretty easy and the results were very good.
two additional ideas
Trena is a trusted source on general cooking.
You might consider fermenting them. If they aren't too big you could even ferment them whole. I suggest reading from the wild fermentation website for recipes and techniques. Here's the link www.wildfermentation.com
When cucumbers start really producing (or green beans or zucchini, etc.) there really is no answer except for 1) donation or 2) the compost heap. One can eat only so many cucumbers. I never feel guilty about option 2, as you are just returning that organic matter to your soil. Do consider staggering your plantings. Once that first planting is getting tired, it's nice to have a fresh planting to carry you into fall.
What great suggestions everyone! Thanks! I was especially intrigued by cucumber kimchi and immediately threw together a batch, along with other fermenting concoctions (Russian - aka 'hacker' - dills, and brined sweet chips). My kitchen counter looks like an apothecary's lab. Next up will be freezer pickles. I've also been experimenting with a wider range of salads. I had to laugh at the giveaway advice. In my neighborhood (rural) that would be about as successful as hauling coals to Newcastle. We're all in the same fix! My hens do love their share, and yep, 'repurposing' to the compost is never an issue. It's simply the gardener's way of paying it forward. So thanks again, ya'll came through big time!
You may run out of cucumbers now
Ironic that an idea so many of us thought was useful (donating to food bank or the like) was totally useless in your neighborhood ;)
So, once again we see the value of many voices, many suggestions...
Freeze them! Make pureed/grated base for your favorite soups and dips so you can have a little taste of summer in February. Make sure to get all of the air out so it doesn't get freezer burn and defrost slowly (in fridge overnight).
We have the same problem with an over load of things from our garden too. After leaving them on the door steps of neighbors and friends, we head to town. We live in a rural area.
I look for cars with open windows, its common here to leave the keys in them too! And I leave a gift of zucchini or cucumbers on the seat. Crazy I know, but I am not the only one who does this.
Lucky your neighbors! I have many second homes around me and it kills me to see tons of fruits left on trees as no one is there to pick and eat them. Not even the gardens bother to take them, there are so many. Maybe that's why there are so many birds around.
We just had the same problem plus we were going on vacation and right now I'm sitting on the beach writing this. The day before we left we made 4-5 varieties of refrigerator pickles - most of our recipes from food52. We used 1/2 gallon jars. When we get back we are having a test testing with our neighbors!
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Well played. You deserve a cookie.
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