There are plenty of reasons to love cucumbers. Some people have an olfactory response to them (though our nose doesn’t find them particularly odiferous). And bartenders and restaurants adore them, especially in warm weather, for their fresh contribution and easy food-pairing ability.
The cucumber is originally from India and is a member of the gourd family. Botanically, they are classified as fruits. (That’s a good little slice of trivia.)
They are more than 90% water. And China produces 60% of them.
Now for the doctorly stuff. At the top of the phytonutrient list for cucumbers are its cucurbitacins, lignans, and flavonoids. These three types of phytonutrients provide us with valuable antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer benefits.
A word about the wax sometimes found on store-bought cucumbers. Organic cucumbers are sealed with non-synthetic waxes whereas conventional cucumbers may be waxed with synthetic waxes that contain chemical contaminants. (We don’t have to tell you what to do with this information.)
You might find more cucumber cocktails offered in Asian restaurants. Here are a few you can make at home:
1.5 oz. Square One Cucumber Organic Vodka
3/4 oz. Cointreau
1 oz. fresh lemon juice
1/2 oz. agave nectar or simple syrup
6 – 10 Mint leaves
Tear the mint leaves in half and place in mixing cup with lemon juice and sweetener. Muddle mint well, then add Square One Cucumber and Cointreau with ice. Shake and double strain into a chilled martini glass. Cocktail should appear crystal green. Garnish with long lime shavings from your zester, which will look like fresh cut grass in the drink.
1 1/2 oz. Square One Cucumber Organic Vodka
3/4 oz. St. Germain Elderflower liqueur
3/4 oz. lime juice
1/4 oz. simple syrup
Cucumber sliced lengthwise and sprinkle of pepper for garnish.
Lay Collins glass on its side, slide cucumber slice along side of glass and then add ice to keep cucumber in place. Pour all ingredients, except soda, into a mixing glass and shake well. Strain into Collins glass filled with ice and cucumber slice. Top with soda water and sprinkle of black pepper.
Take a 4-inch cucumber and cut into chunks — no need to peel.
Toss into a blender filled with Sauza Hornitos Tequila, triple sec, simple syrup, sweet and sour, and ice.