Tuesday, June 27, 2006

I cooked some cucumbers, at last

Over a year ago, I bought a cookbook which included a recipe for baking cucumbers. "Cooking cucumbers, that's insane!" I thought. Although I was intrigued, I never got around to trying it. As you may have intimated, the Drunken Housewife is not always fast off the mark. Sometimes she needs to mull something over or just plain procrastinate (not to mention talk about herself in the third person).

So it took over a year AND a newer cookbook before I finally got off my butt and cooked some cucumbers. This gave me the feeling of taking care of business and crossing stuff off a to do list, although in reality who has a to do list including "bake cucumbers before I die"? The result was fabulous. Even my naysaying husband, who said, "Please don't. Who cooks cucumbers? That sounds terrible" loved the cucumbers.

Baked Cucumbers in Basil Cream
from Farmer John's Cookbook: The Real Dirt on Vegetables by Farmer John Peterson (I am in love with "Famer John": a man who sports a feather boa, at least for his photo shoots).

1 1/2 T red wine vinegar
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp sugar
4-5 cucumbers, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeds removed, cut into 1 inch slices
2 T unsalted butter, melted
1 scallion, finely chopped
1 C heavy cream
3 T chopped fresh basil leaves
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 375 F. Mix vinegar, salt and sugar in medium bowl. Add cucumber slices and toss. Set aside for 30 min to marinate.

Drain cucumber slices & pat dry (I assigned Iris and Lucy to do this, which took them almost half an hour as they painstakingly dabbed each one).

Put cucumbers in a shallow baking dish. Pour melted butter and scallions; mix. Bake, stirring occasionally, about 45 min.

Heat cream in small pot until it comes to a light boil. Cook, stirring frequently, until reduced to 1/2 C (about 20 min). Stir in basil, remove fr. heat; let sit 2 min. or more. Pour basil cream over cucumbers. Season with salt & pepper to taste.

Bon appetit!


Steve said...

Wow! This sounds like a great recipe. Cucumbers are often one of the veggies we get in our CSA basket which we tend to ignore. (Unless they are really cute like lemon cucumbers - then we just chop 'em and toss 'em with some vinegar and sugar.
Thanks for sharing,

Anonymous said...

don't mean to be rude, but you cook a DOG TURD in one cup of heavy cream and that's going to be one delicious dish. hahaha. Joyce

the Drunken Housewife said...

Allow me to point out the ratio of cucumbers to cream was more than 10:1 (over five cups of cucumbers to one half cup of reduced cream sauce). Baked cucumbers rock, Joyce, and you need to just face up to that.

You just wait until I try the cucumber risotto recipe.