It all started when I bumped into Susan from the Farmers Market the other day. While we were bemoaning the lack of arugula, our talk drifted to favorite summer vegetables, and when I asked her which she missed the most, she answered "crisp cucumbers".
While I have loved cucumbers my whole life, for some reason I haven't been eating them lately and I wondered if it was because , eaten plain, after a while they get a little boring. Then I remembered a sweet and sour cucumber salad from the summer I worked in a Finnish restaurant. The cucumbers are left unpeeled, cut paper thin, then marinated for a few hours in a vinegar, sugar, and fresh dill dressing. I've been eating this salad for two days, and still haven't gotten tired of it. The cucumbers still remain fairly crisp, even after two days in the fridge, though I prefer them freshly made and bathed for a few short hours.
Because of the marinade, the cucumbers are a little messy, but you can serve them in small bowls - all the better to drink the last of the marinade . This salad is also good in subs, or as a summery side to supper.
Finnish Cucumber Salad:
2 medium to large garden cucumbers, well scrubbed but not peeled
1/2 cup sugar
1 T. kosher salt
a few grinds of pepper, or white pepper
1/2 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup fresh dill, destemmed, finely chopped or minced
Slice the cucumbers paper thin, place in medium bowl.
In a small bowl, mix the sugar, vinegar, salt and pepper, and dill and stir until the sugar dissolves.
Pour the marinade over the cucumbers and gently stir well.
Cover and place in fridge for at least two hours before eating.
That's it - enjoy!
You might also like Finnish Fruit "soup", which is actually a compote and a delicious winter breakfast.