We are going on our third week of temperatures in the nineties and I am beginning to feel like a cat on a hot tin roof! When the weather is like that, everything stops in this house, including the oven. I am sure you have noticed that recent posts have been full of salads and simple things although I did break my resolve and baked a blueberry pie a couple of weeks ago.
Salmon is the first thing that comes to mind when I want something light on a hot summer night. Grilled or poached, hot or cold. Sunday night we fired up the grill and an Asian styled salmon was served with steamed artichokes and hollandaise sauce. I made plenty so I could have it the next night with something I have been longing for, something my mother used to make in the summer when we lived in Connecticut...Cucumber Salad With Sour Cream and Dill.
If you want something to cool the body inside there is nothing like cucumbers, whether they are in a salad or in a cold soup. In the Middle East, you will often find a small dish placed next to you filled with cucumbers and yogurt to balance the heat of the meal. They were my salvation one night at a formal dinner in Karachi, Pakistan where one dish seemed to be hotter than the last.
I prefer to mix sour cream instead of yogurt with the cucumbers in this salad, something that is traditional in Scandinavia. For a recipe I turned to Anna Pump's cookbook The Loaves And Fishes Cookbook, a selection of her recipes from her fabulous gourmet shop.
Cucumber Salad With Fresh Dill And Sour Cream
Yields 6 to 8 servings
2 European cucumbers*
1 tsp. salt
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1/2 cup peeled and finely chopped red onion
1/4 cup chopped dill
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. white pepper
2 TB white wine vinegar
1 1/2 cups sour cream
Slice the cucumbers very thin. Sprinkle with salt and place them in a colander for 15 minutes. Then press out as much liquid as you can with back of a large spoon. Transfer cucumber slices to a salad bowl. Add rest of ingredients and mix gently but thoroughly with your hands.
* European or seedless cucumbers have no wax coating. Skin is left on for both color and texture (I peel off every other strip) The salad will keep for 24 hours.
All photos Lindaraxa