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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Cucumber and Sour Cream Salad



From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Cucumbers and peppers of all types come to market with a vengeance at this time of year. While there are scores of recipes for peppers, it's harder to find new and interesting ways to prepare cucumbers. I make the usual relish and pickles, and, of course, add them to fish and chicken salads, but it is hard to find truly new ways to use cucumbers. I tend to fall back on the recipes of my childhood and use them with only slight changes to accommodate more modern tastes and better ingredients. The home I grew up in was in a multi-cultural neighborhood and we had Swedish neighbors to our right and German neighbors to our left. I've spoken before with great fondness of Mrs. P and Hannie. They were an important part of my childhood and my love affair with food began in their kitchens. Each kitchen had its own version of cucumber salad and both were delicious. One was vinegar based and the other relied on sour cream. They both, however, shared a preparation technique that guaranteed an outstanding salad. They would salt their cucumbers and let them sit for several hours before adding them to salads. The salting drew moisture from the cucumbers and assured they would be crisp. Once rinsed, they were patted dry and covered with sour cream or vinegar. The result was always a crackly crisp salad that even Lucullus would enjoy. Years ago, I stumbled on a recipe for a cucumber and sour cream salad in House and Garden magazine. It has become a fixture in my kitchen at this time of year. It really is simple to make and I think you'll enjoy it. Here's the recipe.

Cucumber and Sour Cream Salad
...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite inspired by House and Garden Magazine

Ingredients:
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 scant tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons chopped chives or a grating of onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, head and fronds
1 teaspoon celery seed
2 firm fresh cucumbers

Directions:
1) Dissolve salt and sugar in vinegar, add the sour cream and stir smooth. You may like more or less vinegar, salt or sugar, but don't make dressing too sweet. Add the chives, dill and celery seed.
2) Slice unpared cucumbers paper-thin and combine with dressing. Chill for 1 hour or more. Sour cream cucumbers improve in taste as they stand and flavor of cucumbers seeps into dressing. Yield: 4 to 6 servings.







One Year Ago Today: Plum Buckle
















Two Years Ago Today: Shrimp Chowder








You might also enjoy these recipes:
Bread and Butter Pickles - Kirsten's Kitchen
Braised Cucumbers with Dill - The Mom Chef
Corn and Cucumber Salad - Chef Tom Cooks
Pickled Cucumbers - Almond Corner
Friday Favorites: Ten Favorite Cucumber Salads - Kalyn's Kitchen

65 comments:

Dzoli said...

I love this.One my favourite salad and excuse to use lot of fresh dill;)

Aldy @ Al Dente Gourmet said...

What a lovely and simple recipe, Mary! Great combination of flavors.

BTW, I love that slice of Plum Buckle :)

Hugs,

Aldy.

Reem | Simply Reem said...

This sale looks perfect,
What a lovely combination of flavors, this looks absolutely divine and comforting...

Ana Rita said...

Great salad.I'm a huge fan of cucumber!!!I would probably love this dish.

Kisses,
Rita

Priya said...

Soo creamy and delicious refreshing salad..

Hovkonditorn said...

My mum makes similar "dressing" to mix with lettuce and it's really tasty!

Kim said...

So true it ain't easy to find cucumbers recipes. This one looks quite good!

Rettabug said...

Hi Mary!

This is one of DH's favorite summer side dishes & I have TONS of fresh dill growing outside the gazebo. I've never added celery salt to it, though. I will next time!

I've also never heard of pre-salting the cukes. I'll try that, too, for some extra crispness.

I never fail to learn something from a visit to your blog. Thank you!

Hugs,
Rett

p.s. GREAT photo with just the 2 colors of green & white!!!

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

This really is a combination of the two versions-gonna give it a try today:@)

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

Childhood memories for sure. Our family (for as far back as I know) has had a very similar recipe on the table at every big gathering. Ours uses whipped cream. I think I would really enjoy this one, too. Thank you for the tip about salting the cucumbers. blessings ~ tanna

Martha said...

I think cucumber salads were a fixture at most summer dinners! And my mother did the salt technique as well for I loved to sneak those salty cucumber slices whenever I walked through the kitchen. We were of the vinegar group -- I never ate one with sour cream until I was an adult.

Corey @ Learning Patience said...

This salad reminds me of my grandmother - so delicious and perfect anytime!
xoxo from Trinidad

Stéphanie said...

I love this !

The Blonde Duck said...

Sounds delicious!

bellini said...

I do love a delicious cucumber salad. It tastes so fresh and perfect for a summer barbecue.

AndiWinslow said...

Looks ever so tasty......I have never made this salad but have had it and very good........thanks, andi

Carol @ There's Always Thyme to Cook said...

Looks so good! Cucumber salad is a big favorite, have to try it with sour cream now.

StephenC said...

I love cucumber salad and cannot explain why I so rarely make it. When I was growing up I think my mother would use vinegar as a dressing.

Jenn said...

I have never found a cucumber salad I didn't like... this sounds delicious!!

lena said...

certainly love this one! simply marvellous!

Choni said...

Hola Mary:
Gracias por pasar por mi blog y dejar tu comentario..es para mí todo un honor.
Enlazo en tuyo en mi lista de favoritos, porque pienso que es exelente.
Espero que sigamos viendonos por aqui.
Saluditossssssssss

http://frogghina.giallozafferano.it/ said...

thanks for your words on my blog,I also like your blog and I follow you,your meat is very good and nice.I hope to meet you again, and write right,my english is not very good kiss kiss

Karen Harris said...

This reminds me of my childhood too. My mother was partial to the sour cream version but the vinegar version was always thrown in every now and then for a change. I'm going to have to try your recipe as it sounds a bit more flavorful than Mom's.

Ryan said...

Thanks so much for posting this. My husband just asked me to track down a similar recipe that his family always made with cucumbers, evaporated milk, and vinegar that he loves so I'm going to try this as it sounds like it may do the trick. This is perfect timing Mary! Thank you!!

Velva said...

We have German friends who often prepare cucumbers and sour cream. We love it. It's fresh and delicious.

Cheers.
Velva

PeggyR said...

I just bought a cucumber, so I will definitely be making these.

Emily Malloy said...

My grandfather had a similar recipe that I am so often homesick over.

Oh thank you for taking me down my own memory lane :)

We Are Not Martha said...

Ooh what a unique and delicious-sounding idea for a salad! I love cucumbers :)

Sues

Lori E said...

We were just talking about this cucumber dish at work last week. Someone had never heard of it. Imagine that!

Kelly said...

I love cucumber salads, but I have to admit I normally gravitate toward the Asian-inspired, vinegar based ones. I love the sound of one with sour cream. How creamy and refreshing.

Inspired by eRecipeCards said...

Finally I got a bag of cucs from my neighbor! on my list (it's a big bag!)

June said...

This is absolutely my favorite way to have cucumbers. Thanks so much for the reminder - it's been far too long since I've served it.

Big Dude said...

This looks outstanding Mary - Bev especially loves cucumber salad.

Jaime said...

I have memories of my grandmother making a dish very similar to this one. It brings back great memories. Thanks! I will have to make it for myself now :)

Nathalia said...

Ay Mary, que buena pinta tiene este plato y con lo que me gustan los pepino y el sour cream.
Muy buena receta
Un abrazo

Rita said...

This for sure is a must try.
Rita

Country Dreaming said...

Yum Yum! I'd take some now. It is so refreshing.

Melinda

Juliana said...

Oh Mary, I love cucumbers and this salad looks delicious, so refreshing.
Hope you are having a great week :-)

Neha said...

this salad looks so refreshing...

Joanne said...

there is definitely a dearth of captivating cucumber recipes out there, but you've found a gem here!

Lynn said...

What a lovely looking dish. So cool and refreshing.

Ginny said...

This does look lovely and cool. How would you eat it, on a cracker, in a sandwich?

From the Kitchen said...

My mother and grandmother used a simple syrup, vinegar and salt for cucumbers, my Thai friend adds fish sauce and crushed red pepper to the simple syrup/vinegar and my Hungarian friend's recipe is very similar to yours. Me? I love them all!

I hope things are going well for your daughter and family.

Best,
Bonnie

Amalia said...

This looks delicious! My mom makes a cucumber salad very similar to this with yogurt and dill :)

yummychunklet said...

This looks like the most refreshing and cooling salad! Yum!

Roz from 'la bella vita' said...

I love cuke salad so much! I like how you added chives and celery salt to jazz it up more. I made a version from Ina Garten if you'd like to check it out. It was unusual in that she used yogurt!?! But it was delish!

http://bellavita-bellasblog.blogspot.com/2011/04/creamy-cucumber-salad-with-fresh-dill.html

I've been following your blog for some time now and always enjoy your recipes and thoughts! Keep up the great blog!

Roz

none said...

This looks really refreshing and would be great to have with a sandwich...I know my boys would love this!

Lizzy said...

This is the salad that finally got my father-in-law to like cucumbers. Now if I could just get his son to enjoy them, I would be delighted. Great dish~

That Girl said...

Sounds like a great neighborhood to grow up in!

Christine's Pantry said...

Easy and tasty! :-)

Julie said...

I love this, looks so fresh and lovely!

tasteofbeirut said...

The salad sounds lovely; the advantage of living in a neighborhood such as yours was is that kids will become open-minded about what they eat and life in general

Sutapa said...

I love cucumber and this one looks so creamy! A refreshing comfy salad!

Anna A. said...

Mmmm mmm I just had something like this at the Hungarian restaurant I went to in Albany - so refreshing, especially during these hot times we're having in OR

Becki's Whole Life said...

We make this and my kids would probably eat the whole bowl if I let them. I like your addition of celery seed here.

Pavithra said...

I love this a lot ..its so refreshing and can have anytime of the day.. gorgeous .

Faith said...

What a beautiful and refreshing salad, Mary. Sour cream makes the perfect creamy base and the addition of dill is perfect! Hope you're having a wonderful week!

Gloria (The Little Red House with the White Porch) said...

You're bringing back lots of good memories - my mother made this all the time when I was young! She'd make a plainer version though: she'd skip the dill and peel the "cukes" and use white vinegar, but everyone has their own version... But she would salt them and leave them to drain, like your neighbors though. I haven't made these myself in ages. Thanks for the reminder. Isn't it wonderful when we think of our old memories? Thanks for sharing.
Best,
Gloria

StarletStarlet said...

Dear Mary,

Thank you so much for coming over and I'm so glad that you enjoy your visit.

I cannot get enough of your recipes and delicious photos! I tried making a cucumber salad a couple of weeks ago, but it was just okay and it became too watery. I'm going to give yours a try, it looks SUPER good, plus we still have a few cucumbers left from the garden!

Lori said...

This dish is a summer staple in our house. My kids go crazy over it.

Rettabug said...

I made these this past week & BOY-O-BOY is your version better than the way I was doing it before. Waaaaay more flavor & crunch!

I asked DH how he liked them & he said, quote "mmmmMMMMMMMMmmmmmm!!" Voice inflection depicted by the capital letters.
I'm really glad I still had some fresh dill growing so I could try it. Most of it has dried & gone to seed for next year's crop.
I also think the celery seed added a great deal of flavor.

From now on, THIS is how I'll be making it.
Thank you SO much for sharing the recipe, Mary.

hugs,
Rett

Lena. said...

I wish I still had my cucumber plants! I'd totally make this.

Franziska said...

This is my (and lots of my friends) favourite salad, too. This salad has been going on in our family for years. I don't put celery seeds into my salad but I will try it out, I love celery seeds. I usually put either fresh garlic or garlic salt into my cucumber/sour cream salad.

Rettabug said...

Hi Mary,

I did a blog post about this salad & gave you all the credit!

2011/11/delicious-cucumber-sour-cream-salad.html

Thank you again for sharing this delicious recipe.

fondly,
Rett

PCM said...

I just started following you and am very happy I stumbled across this recipe as I have been looking for a similar one for quite some time. I can't wait to see what other goodies you share with us!

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