The summer feels as though it's drifting away, as I mentioned earlier this week, but our garden seems not to have caught on . . . In particular, the cucumbers are out of control! They have made their way onto all the other plants, big or small, the cucs know no boundaries. Their curly vines remind me exactly of how the cartoon pumpkin grows into a stagecoach to whisk Cinderella off to the ball, so swirly and fairy-tale they are. Now I haven't a vegetative method of transport (that would be awesome though!), but I do have a fairy Godmother, the darling heart Joan, who's home she generously offered (and we happily agreed) to use for our wedding.
Back to the cucumbers though -- what to do with a lot of extras on hand? I'm interested in pickling, but this quick relish appealed to me more. It's really lovely on a piece of grilled tofu or sprinkled into a quinoa salad; it's at once sweet, savory and floral . . . a real celebration of the peak-season summer fruits, veggies and flavors. It's hardly a recipe, more an idea with lots of variation potential.
Peach, Cucumber and Basil Relish
1 peach, medium diced
1 cucumber, medium diced
1/4 cup basil, chiffonaded (finely cut into slim shreds)
juice from one lime
salt and pepper to taste
Directions: Mix all ingredients in one bowl, allow to sit for 20 minutes before eating, for flavors to harmonize.
- mango and cilantro for something with a more Latin/Indian feel
- tomato and thyme for a Frenchy twist
- apricot and mint for a Turkish-inspired flavor