Until we have a garden in our backyard, growing our food is mostly Matthew’s domain, and these days, I rarely venture out to our commuter garden. However, before we left for our trip a couple of weeks ago, I headed out for one final picking.
I harvested a boatload of cucumbers and hatched a half-baked plan to take the cukes to Iowa with us and make refrigerator dills for my family. We nixed that plan, and the cukes sat in our dying fridge for a week.
We returned to a fridge full of still okay cukes. After staring them down for a few days, I decided the best way to use a large number of cucumbers was some kind of chilled soup.
Some searching yielded a variety of recipes, many that only used one cucumber (that would never do!). The most promising involved cucumbers and avocado, but, while I want to give that a try someday, I was determined to work with ingredients I had on hand, so avocado was out.
I needed something in place of the avocado to make the soup thick and rich, since cucumbers are mostly water. The secret ingredients? Rice and tahini.
Chilled cucumber soup
Recipe by Melissa
3-4 pounds cucumbers
1 cup cooked brown rice
1/3 cup good olive oil
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. freshly ground black pepper
1-2 T. tahini
2 t. Greek spice mix (or blend of other fresh and/or dried herbs)
1-2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/3 c. chopped onion
1 c. corn (optional)
Trim and discard the ends of the cucumbers. If using larger cukes with a lot of seeds, cut in half longways and scoop out and discard the seeds. Dice the cucumbers. Set aside 2 cups of diced cucumbers.
In batches, puree all ingredients, except for the reserved diced cukes and the corn, in a blender or food processor.
Try a sample, and add more salt, pepper, or herbs to taste. Mix in the diced cucumbers and garnish with corn. Serve chilled.
This looks really yummy. I have been tempted to find a way to make a cold cucumber and sorrel (great lemony flavor and nutrition). I am tempted to try the rice and tahini to make a great Mediterranean soup. I am sad to leave my garden in mid season, so I am working on using up what we can harvest. The thriving tomato plants that we will soon leave make me sad.
I’ve never tried sorrel, but it sounds interesting. I imagine I can put in a request with my gardener 😉
Cucumbers are so refreshing, so this is perfect for the summer! Can’t wait to try!
Boy, we have tons of cukes, and I’ve been looking for new ways to use them. I’ve made cucumber soup before, but never with brown (or any) rice, and I don’t believe I’ve ever used tahini either. Really interesting idea! Thanks for this.
I made the soup. It was so yummy and refreshing. I picked a large bunch of sorrel (which by the way is a perennial, can’t beat that) and used my immersion blender to chop it up with a little vege broth (I ended up cooking half the sorrel). I had a bunch of cucumbers, but wished I had had more to add so that the flavor would have come through a little more. Then, I added the tahini, white pepper, and salt (from Hawaii). At the end I stirred in homemade Greek yogurt since the immersion blender would have thinned it out too much. The lemony flavor of sorrel paired well with everything and made a refreshing soup and a chance to get one last meal before leaving my garden tomorrow.
Dear friends, Brahmakumaris are vegetarian… and emphasize that when cooking in a peaceful, loving frame of mind, the resulting food will nourish the emotions as well as the body. There is Brahmakumaris meditation…that relaxes the mind…nurtures a healthy balance between inner and outer worlds… recharge… rejuvenate the inner-self…