Melon Cucumber Basil Salad

Oh, that you could taste this right now. Icy cold, crisp, slightly sweet – with accent of fresh basil leaves and lemon and the slightest drizzle of honey. I am in heaven.
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I absolutely love those yellow melons at Costco – I think they’re called sunshine? They’re amazing – the flesh is mostly like a honeydew. If they are not super ripe, they are crisp and still sweet. When they are ripe, they are a dripping juicy mass of honey sweetness. It’s a win/win.
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Dammit, I love summer. Make this – you will be so happy.
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There isn’t really a recipe, per se. Just this:
Cube or ball as much melon as you’ d like to use.
Peel and dice an equal volume of English cucumber. (If you use the normal kind, I’d seed it.)
Toss in a bowl.
Rinse and chiffonade a couple of basil leaves (more or less to your taste).
Zest some lemon on to the mix, and then squeeze in a little lemon juice.
Drizzle with some honey.
Toss and eat.

Salads! Asian Flavors Cucumber Salad

So….I may or may not have purchased one of those spiral slicers. 

This week it’s another cucumber salad, this time with salty sesame flavor. Yum! 

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It’s ok to make the sauce ahead of time, but you should really toss it together and then eat it right away. It’s best when the cukes are super crisp as opposed to marinated. It seems like a lot of ingredients, but it’s not super hard: some rice vineger, mirin, soy sauce, toasted sesame oil along with some minced ginger, a dash of white miso and some black and white sesame seeds. 

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Garnish with some pickled (unsweetened) ginger, and away we rock and roll.

I thought this would actually be awesome with some cubed avocados and some tuna, but haven’t played with that yet.

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Hope you enjoy it!
For the sauce
1/4 c. seasoned rice vinegar
1 tsp. mirin
1 tsp. minced ginger (I used a Dorot cube)
1/2 tsp. white miso
1 tsp. soy sauce
1 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil
1 tsp. each white and black sesame seeds
For the salad
1/2 english cucumber, sliced on a spiral slicer**
For the garnish
Pickled, unsweetened ginger (those red sticks)
Instructions
Mix all the ingredients for the sauce.
Pour the sauce over the cucumber.
Garnish with the red ginger.
Inhale.
Notes
**If you don’t do the spiral bit, 1/8″ thick half-moons will do just dandy.
Servings 4
Calories 47
Fat 4 g
Sodium 103 mg
Carbs 2 g
Protein 1 g

Summer summer summer salads!! Gurkensalat.

My father’s family is from a tiny, tiny town in Ohio. Often in the summer, we would go “back east” to visit. My paternal grandparents were wound pretty tight; I never felt comfortable when I was there. But my Grandmother Charlotte always made two things that stuck in my mind: cucumber salad, and huge soft lemon sugar cookies.  Those are my favorite memories of those trips; well, those and fireflies. Being from the desert, fireflies have always fascinated me.  As far as the victuals, to this day I’ve not found the equivalent for the cookies but I have for the cukes!  Thank you, interwebs.
GurkenCollage

This is simple. And quick. And so very yummy and cool, and great with summery foods like picnics and barbecues.  It pays to make a big batch; it will keep in the fridge for at least a week. Unless you live with me; then it’s two days, tops.

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The only thing is, you really do need a mandoline for this. Unless you’ve been to chef school and have the mad knife skills to slice a cucumber in to wafer thin slices.

 

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I really hope you try this one. It’s tangy, sweet, savory and crunchy.
For the marinade
1/2 c. water
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. white vinegar
For the salad
1/2 English cucumber, washed and sliced wafer-thin on a mandoline
1/4 Sweet white onion like a Vidalia or a Maui Sweet, sliced wafer-thin on a mandoline
1 Tbsp. dried dill weed, or 2 Tbsp. minced fresh.
Instructions
Put the marinade ingredients in a sauce pan or in a microwave-safe bowl. Bring to an almost boil, until the sugar is dissolved and set aside to cool.
While the marinade is cooling, wash and slice the veg.
In a tall, wide-mouthed container, put a single layer of cukes, a single layer of onion and sprinkle of dill.
Continue until all the stuff is in the jar.
By this time, the marinade should be about room temp. Pour it over the ingredients in the jar.
Refrigerate.
If you can contain yourself, these are best eaten after a day.
Notes
You can also make this with crème fraîche instead of the marinade. Just mix it all together. Nerms.

Servings 4
Calories 114
Fat 0 g
Sodium 5 mg
Carbs 28 g
Protein 0 g

Cucumber Watermelon Salad with Dill and Mint

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Sweet, salty, savoury, crunchy.

 

Are you ready to taste summer? I am. I have found myself daydreaming about the bounty to come – piles and piles of tomatoes and squash and melon. And the salads. Oh, the salads.  I find myself rejecting recipes of late if they involve turning on the oven.  Mind you, it’s not super hot yet. Not at all. It’s just that I’m ready.

So it’s safe to say the baking tornado of the last few months at The Yum are at an end. Which left me, well, idea-less for a post. After much guilt, I gave myself permission to say fuck all and go out for the day. Stop #1 – Za’atar for a falafel breakfast.  I fucking love that place.  Hopped over to Caravan while waiting for my order, and he had these gorgeous crates of mint and dill and cucumbers and eggplant and lemons and ……aaaaaah. I had to have some.

Those, some olives, some fig jam and sesame candies for Himself and away I went.

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When I saw the watermelon in the fridge as I was putting things away, I knew what to make. And then immediately consume.

This is fast, and should be served and eaten immediately.  I even got to feel all fancy-pants when I rolled the dill up in the mint leaves for a quick chiffonade.  (Thank you, Sarah Moulton and FoodTV!) This baby is all about the fresh and crunch. Mmmmmm. Chompa-chomp-chomp.

You could totally add some cubed feta and a wedge of bread and call this summer supper (just leave out the salt if you do).  I inhaled mine as a snack. Couldn’t even wait to grill some chicken or something to eat with it.

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Come on, Summer. This just has me wanting you more.
Ingredients
2 c. watermelon in ½” dice
1 c. jicama in ½” dice
1 c. cucumber in ½” wedges
1 thin slice red onion, separated in to rings
Drizzle of olive oil
Drizzle of white balsamic or wine vinegar
Four or five fresh mint leaves and a thumb-sized sprig of fresh dill, chiffonaded
Dash of S&P
Instructions
Toss together and eat.

Servings 2
Calories 83
Fat 1 g
Sodium 6 mg
Carbs 20 g
Protein 2 g

Cucumber Tomato Salad with Mint and Dill

Summer. It’s already here in the desert. 

Yeah, it’s hot. But it’s also bountiful produce season – with all the fantastic salad combinations that brings.
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This is a six pieces of simple salad – some herbs, olive oil, lemon juice and diced cucumber, onion and tomato. Quick stir and you’re off to the picnic, park or pool.  Those gorgeous herbs and cuke are from Caravan Market, of course!

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This one’s easy – give it a shot! Fortify it with some gorgeous oil-packed ventresco tuna, or a good feta and make it a meal.
Bon appétit!

Cucumber Tomato Herb Salad

Cucumber Tomato Salad with Herbs
Serves 2
Fast and simple composed salad.
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Prep Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
123 calories
15 g
0 g
7 g
2 g
1 g
304 g
19 g
8 g
0 g
6 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
304g
Servings
2
Amount Per Serving
Calories 123
Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7g
11%
Saturated Fat 1g
5%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 19mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 15g
5%
Dietary Fiber 3g
10%
Sugars 8g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
27%
Vitamin C
45%
Calcium
6%
Iron
9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1/2 large heirloom tomato, diced
  2. 1 persian cucumber, diced
  3. 1/2" slice of sweet onion, diced
  4. 1/4 c. chopped parsley
  5. 1 Tbsp fresh mint, juilienned
  6. 2 Tbsp fresh dill, chopped
  7. 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  8. 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
Instructions
  1. Combine in a bowl.
  2. Eat.
  3. S&P at your discretion.
beta
calories
123
fat
7g
protein
2g
carbs
15g
more
Bucket of Yum http://bucketofyum.com/

Cucumber, Carrot & Jicama Salad

Do you go through phases where you just want to eat the same thing all the time? This may surprise you, but I am currently fixated on carrots. Specifically shredded carrots.  My friend Karen introduced me to this one fantastic Lao/Thai dish a long time ago – green papaya salad. It is scrumptious, and was the inspiration for Carrot Salad #2.  

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This was quick and easy. Now I just wish I had some sticky rice.

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 For the carrots and the jicama, I used that blue doodad in the pic above – I got it for a couple bucks at the asian market.  It shreds – but the shreds are triangular in the cross section, and you can make them as long as you want – a longer carrot or stroke of the tool makes a longer shred. It’s pretty cool – I was totally stoked when Karen told me about that puppy. Oh, and this recipe has fish sauce. You could leave it out, but you’ll be sad. You don’t taste the fish, promise, unless you’re like a super sniffer or pregnant or otherwise olfactorily enhanced. And, I totally cheated on the dressing and just used some sweet chili sauce with the lime juice and fish sauce.  

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Shredded Carrot, Cucumber & Jicama Salad
Serves 2
Crunchy and fast - delicious with grilled chicken kebabs.
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Prep Time
20 min
Total Time
20 min
Prep Time
20 min
Total Time
20 min
96 calories
17 g
0 g
3 g
2 g
0 g
192 g
504 g
8 g
0 g
2 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
192g
Servings
2
Amount Per Serving
Calories 96
Calories from Fat 23
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 3g
4%
Saturated Fat 0g
2%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 504mg
21%
Total Carbohydrates 17g
6%
Dietary Fiber 4g
17%
Sugars 8g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
213%
Vitamin C
22%
Calcium
4%
Iron
4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1/2 english cucumber, seeded and cut in to matchsticks
  2. 1/2" slice of jicama, shredded
  3. 2 carrots, peeled and shredded*
  4. 2 Tbps. thin slices of shallot or purple onion
  5. 1/4 c. chopped cilantro
  6. 1/4 c. sweet chili sauce
  7. 8 drops fish sauce
  8. 2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
  9. (1 tsp. toasted sesame oil)
Instructions
  1. Mix it. Eat it.
Notes
  1. The sesame oil is optional - I just really like the taste.
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calories
96
fat
3g
protein
2g
carbs
17g
more
Bucket of Yum http://bucketofyum.com/