Saturday, April 27, 2013


The English word "cucumber" comes from the Latin name cucumis.
The cucumber is of the gourd family. Cucumbers are usually more than 90% water.
Much like tomatoes and squash they are often also perceived, prepared and eaten as vegetables. But they are classified as accessory fruits. The fruit of the cucumber is roughly cylindrical, elongated with tapering ends.
The cucumber originated in India, where a great varieties exist.
It has been cultivated for at least 3,000 years.
From India, it spread to Greece and to Italy also later into China.
In human cultivation, the varieties of cucumbers are classified into three main varieties: "slicing", "pickling", and "burpless".
Cucumbers which are grown to be eaten fresh are called slicing cucumbers. 

So they are mainly eaten in the unripe green form.
Those cucumbers intended for pickling, called picklers, grow to about 7 centimeters to 10 centimeters long and 2.5 centimeters wide. As compared to slicers, picklers tend to be shorter, thicker, less regularly shaped, and have bumpy skin with tiny white or black-dotted spines.
The pickling process removes or degrades much of the nutrient content, especially that of vitamin C.
Burpless cucumbers are sweeter and have a thinner skin than other varieties of cucumber, and are reputed to be easy to digest and to have a pleasant taste. 
Next to tomatoes, cabbage, and onions, cucumbers are the fourth most widely cultivated vegetable in the world. 
Cucumber is a fruit, of the vine but is classified as a vegetable. 
Cucumbers should be stored in the refrigerator where they will keep for several days.
Always remember that the skins and seeds of cucumbers are both rich in nutrients. 
Cucumbers are loaded with vitamins and minerals, all of which are vital to human health.
Soothe Puffy Eyes ... The high water content helps to hydrate the tender skin under the eyes if round cucumber slices are placed on them..
Quick pickling is done for flavor rather than preservation.
So simply going to do an acidic brine and use it to soak our vegetables.
Cucumbers are the most common choice, but any nice crisp vegetable will do: green beans, cauliflower, carrots, shallots, onions, asparagus they all are terrific if pickled.
The main ingredient in pickle brine is vinegar. White vinegar is most common, but you can also use cider vinegar or wine vinegar.
Some recipes call for straight vinegar, others dilute it with up to 3 times its volume with water.
Salt is nearly always included in the brine. But amounts vary, from less than a teaspoon to over a tablespoon per cup of liquid.
Many recipes include sweeteners. Sugar is most common and is much needed when vinegar is not diluted with water.
Spices the most common ones are mustard seed, dill seed, peppercorns and garlic, but any spices can be used.
The process is simple, so mix all the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the salt and sugar completely.
Place your vegetables in a clean, dry glass container, pour in the boiling brine to submerge them completely.

1 comment:

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