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It’s the Year of the Cucumber!

It’s weird how every year my garden produces an overabundance of a particular vegetable. I’ve had years when I give away tomatoes and soooo many peppers. This year, it’s the year of the cucumber. I mean, every week we are picking at least eight to ten cucumbers, fully grown, all from one plant!

I’ve never had such gorgeous and tasty cucumbers from my garden. We’re eating them all the time and I’m loving it. It’s hot outside and the crunch of a cool cucumber is just the right thing to naturally quench my body’s thirst.

Cucumber is one of nature’s home-grown hydration resources. Like watermelon, the cucumber has a high water content (95%). Plus, cucumbers contain potassium, magnesium, vitamin C, folate, beta carotene, and vitamin K.

Apparently, I’ve done a good job watering since cucumber plants  grow well in a warm and moist environment. In fact, a well watered cucumber plant will produce sweeter fruit. (Yes, cucumber is a fruit!)

I’ve been growing a classic garden cucumber, but I also love English cucumbers. Next year I want to try other varieties such as the lemon cucumber.

We love to eat cucumbers any way we can… salads, dips, soups, with a dollop of hummus on top and more. But with our abundance of cucumbers this year, we’ve been looking for other things to do with them. Check out these fun ideas we found.

12 Surprising Claims for Cucumber Superpowers:

  1. Defog a bathroom mirror. Try rubbing a cucumber slice over the mirror; it will eliminate the fog. Bonus, your bathroom will smell like a spa!
  2. Say no to grubs and slugs in the garden Place a few slices of cucumber in a small pie tin and your garden will be free of pests all season long. The chemicals in the cucumber react with the aluminum to give off a scent undetectable to humans, but garden pests don’t like it and will stay away.
  3. Avoid a headache or hangover.  Eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed and wake up refreshed and headache free. Cucumbers supposedly contain enough sugar, B vitamins and electrolytes to replenish essential nutrients the body lost, keeping everything in  equilibrium, avoiding both a hangover and headache!
  4. Avoid the late afternoon cravings.  Plan to indulge with a nice plate of sliced cucumber for an afternoon snack. The water in cucumbers will perk you up and fill you up. Plus the low glycemic index in a cucumber means you won’t have a big sugar swing, resulting in more cravings.
  5. Emergency shoe polish. Rub a freshly cut cucumber over your leather shoe; its chemicals will provide a quick and durable shine that not only looks great but also repels water.
  6. Steam your cares away.  Cut up an entire cucumber and place it in a boiling pot of water. Remove pot from the heat and cover your head with a towel to capture the steam for your face. The chemicals and nutrients from the cucumber will be released in the steam, creating a soothing, relaxing aroma as the steam opens your pores and releases the impurities from your face.
  7. Make a mask. Sticking with the home facial idea, make a mask of mashed cucumber and pat on your face. Leave for 15 minutes for the antioxidants and anti-inflammatories to soothe your skin. Your face will be lightened, brightened, hydrated and toned. Sign me up!
  8. Take a chill moment. Don’t want to do a full home facial? Look and feel great by placing frozen or cold cucumber slices on your eyes to reduce redness and puffiness. Lie back and relax.
  9. Instant breath refresher. Press a slice of cucumber to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds to eliminate bad breath.
  10. Go green when cleaning faucets, sinks or stainless steel. Take a slice of cucumber, add in some elbow grease, and rub it on the surface you want to clean. Not only will it remove years of tarnish and bring back the shine, but it won’t leave streaks and won’t harm you as you clean.
  11. Natural eraser. Take a whole cucumber and slowly use it to erase pen writing. This also works great on crayons and markers that the kids have used to decorate the walls! (Not my kids!)
  12. Play with your food. Kids (and big kids) love to make things out of their food. Search for ideas and how-to’s for fun ideas like this cute gator. I want to eat him before he gets me!

Have fun trying these ideas. Let us know what works for you!

 

 

 

Cucumbers Galore!

Find more delightful cucumber-inspired recipes in your DinnerTime Recipe Box.
You can search for an ingredient (e.g. eggplant, etc) the name or part of the name of a recipe (lasagna), a cuisine (Italian), type of dish (e.g. soup), an occasion (Thanksgiving, breakfast, tailgating, etc).

A light and refreshing salad!

Make extra of this healthy and tasty salad for lunch the next day.

A cool and refreshing side dish.