26 Jul2006

cuke1

I spotted these really pale cucumbers at the market the other day and couldn’t resist purchasing them. July seems to be the month that cucumbers appear big time in the markets…not sure if that coincides with the phenomenal volume of water pouring out of the sky at this time cuke2of the year…cucumbers, are, after all, almost entirely made up of water… At any rate, I wrote about the many different kinds of cucumbers I found at the market last July, and followed that up with a simple recipe for a cucumber salad with a “Visayan Vinaigrette.” Typically, folks would classify cucumbers into three groups…many seedless ones that are often grown in greenhouses in the West (these would include Japanese, Asian and European varieties, pickling cucumbers which are fatter and pudgier, and the dark green cucumbers that we normally use for salads. I wasn’t sure where these albino cucumbers fit in. They could be mutated pickling cucumbers or blond salad cukes… I like to think of them as our “dugong” or manatee cukes because their shape and color remind me of these massive sea cows… I know several readers have asked about these cukes in the past, but I have never used them in a recipe. Do you have any ideas what I can use them for before they lose their freshness hanging out in my refrigerator’s vegetable drawer?

 

COMMENTS:

  1. Wilson Cariaga says:

    I don’t know but my mom calls these “native cucumber” and they enjoy eating it sliced thin then soaked in a mixture of vinegar water pepper and sugar. . . I always see these sold on our local market in Vigan. . .

    Jul 26, 2006 | 6:09 pm

     
  2. joey says:

    Those look interesting! Which market did you find them at? I have a regular dark green one in the fridge to put into some tea sandwiches. Have you tasted one of these white guys? Do you think they’ll be good in a raita? That’s my favorite thing to do with “cukes” :)

    Jul 26, 2006 | 6:13 pm

     
  3. bogchief says:

    I think these cucumber would go great in spicy Thai cucumber salad (Som Tam Taeng). Instead of the usual green papaya, youl have the coolness of white cucumber.

    Jul 26, 2006 | 6:22 pm

     
  4. Marketman says:

    Joey, I just tasted it and it seems even blander than the green variety. But the skin is really thin, so you are all right, I think this would work in my Visayan Vinaigrette, it would do very well in in raita and I bet it would do well in the spicy concoction bogchief describes…yum. I found them at the FTI Taguig market last Saturday…

    Jul 26, 2006 | 6:27 pm

     
  5. izang says:

    my mom cooks this as a simple ginisa….saute garlic, onions, and tomato…add ground lean beef…some patis…cook for a few minutes, add some water, then the chopped pipino…simmer for a few minutes then serve…a good accompaniment to fried fish and rice.

    Jul 26, 2006 | 7:57 pm

     
  6. carol says:

    Check out this cucumber yogurt salad by Elise of simply recipes:
    http://www.elise.com/recipes/archives/000656cucumber_yogurt_salad.php

    There are links to more cucumber recipes at the bottom of her page :-)

    Jul 26, 2006 | 8:01 pm

     
  7. Sunny says:

    Here’s a suggestion: peel the cucumber and cut into 1-cm cubes. Put in a bowl, mix with some finely chopped raw garlic (start with just a little, can always add to taste). Dress with a bit of sesame oil and salt, both to taste. Great, and here in Manila, little known Chinese starter, very easy to make, and quite good. And I don’t even like cucumbers.

    Jul 26, 2006 | 9:28 pm

     
  8. Ciela says:

    This isn’t a dish, but an interesting drink. I haven’t tried this yet but a friend mentioned that she tried this cocktail. It’s a concoction of Coke and Jim Beam, a predictable drink. But it was served with a slice of cucumber. The secret was in the cucumber which made a big difference to it’s taste. Interesting.

    Jul 26, 2006 | 10:56 pm

     
  9. virgilio says:

    After peeling off skin, slice thinly 1 medium-size cucumber. Add one TB salt, mix, and keep in the fridge for cucumbers to get rid of water content. Take out after one hour, rinse and squeeze dry to reduce saltiness. Add pepper, some sugar and some vinegar (according to taste)and keep again in the fridge for 30 min. to 1 hour before serving (as salad).

    Jul 26, 2006 | 11:04 pm

     
  10. perkycinderella says:

    There’s plenty of this kind in Negros Occidental.

    Jul 27, 2006 | 12:37 am

     
  11. Rampau says:

    My Mom cooks this as gulay na pipino. Ginisa with lots of shrimp and shrimp juice. Yummy!

    Jul 27, 2006 | 12:37 am

     
  12. Corrine says:

    Interesting what one can do with this cucumber. I made greek salad out of it. You can even juice it and mix with other fresh fruit juices

    Jul 27, 2006 | 1:01 am

     
  13. NYCMama says:

    I once tasted this at a spa: they simply sliced cucumbers, and let several slices float on top of a pitcher of water, no ice. The water takes on the fresh taste of the cukes! Perfect for a hot day, serve on ice!

    Jul 27, 2006 | 1:50 am

     
  14. linda says:

    Try peeled thinly sliced cukes,season with freshly ground pepper,salt to taste and a little sugar and place on buttered fresh bread and voila! you now have British royalty cuisine!

    Jul 27, 2006 | 9:31 am

     
  15. goodtimer says:

    In our family, this type of cucumber is cooked as “ulam” (the green ones are the type used for “ensalada” or for pickling). Skinned, seeded and sliced a bit thick diagonally, it is sauteed in garlic, onions, some ripe tomatoes, ground pork and shrimps with patis. Once cooked, add a mean dash of black pepper. Yes, it’s cooked like upo but tastes better than upo.

    Jul 27, 2006 | 11:59 am

     
  16. Choy says:

    just tried your cucumber with visayan vinaigrette, mm. it makes for spectacular pulutan! whether imbibing beer or scotch, it was a perfect and refreshing partner to the libation of choice at a recent birthday bash.

    but then again, by around 2 a.m. a couple of the more alchohol-affected guests tried out the cucumber’s efficacy against eyebags, and while some thought it hilarious, it was really kinda messy.

    so be careful when serving with drinks…and drunks.

    Jul 28, 2006 | 11:15 am

     
  17. connie says:

    Oh yeah, we have this kind of cucumber in abundance back home. My mom make cucumber salad with it as she calls it, just mixture of vinegar, brown sugar, salt and pepper. She does that with white raddish (labanos) too. The salad is usually eaten with longganisa when she’s out of homemade atchara.

    Jul 28, 2006 | 12:12 pm

     
  18. Maricel says:

    We also know this as “native” pipino. This can be cut into strings using the melon stringer and mixed into guinataang sariwa. Guinataang Sariwa is sweetened fresh coconut milk mixed with sliced boiled saba bananas, cubed boiled rootcrops (ube, kamote, kamoteng kahoy, tugi, tungo or what have you), sago, gelatin cubes, chico cubes, fresh and toasted pinipig served ice cold. This is usually served during the small barrio fiestas (actually another fiesta from the main one) known as Pasalamat (thanksgiving for a good harvest). A very refreshing dessert for the hot summer months.

    Jul 28, 2006 | 1:12 pm

     
  19. kulasa says:

    Thanks Maricel. I’ve tasted this pipino drink before and tried to duplicate it. They told me it was cucumber and coconut. Tried doing it but I used the green cucumber (yuk!). It didn’t have much of the fruits, just the fresh piniping.

    Jul 29, 2006 | 7:33 am

     
  20. Bubut says:

    you can cut it in cubes, remove the seeds and add shelled shrimp and mayonnaise…add salt and pepper. Good refreshing salad.

    Jul 29, 2006 | 11:23 am

     
  21. Marketman says:

    Gosh a lot of these suggestions I would never have thought of…will have to try them out…many, many thanks for the different ways to use these cool cucumbers!

    Jul 29, 2006 | 1:20 pm

     
 

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