Thursday, August 19, 2010

Cucumbers As Dog Treats, Cold Cucumber Soup!

Bamboo teepees are great for cuke vines
to climb up.  I built the portable
picket fence so I could take it
when/if we ever move.  It keeps the
dogs out of the garden, all except Lucky.
As you can see,
the agility equipment is in the same yard.
I've had so many cucumbers in my garden this summer, I can't begin to eat them all.  I eat one a day, then give a bunch away to neighbors, bring them to agility class, and feed slivers to my dogs, which they fight over except for Fooh Fooh, who has always spit them out.  Thus, I didn't know dogs went for cucumbers, but they do, especially the papillons.

The cukes are nearing the end of their run now, the leaves are turning brown. A few days back I was going through them and found 2 giant ones that I somehow missed.  They are twice normal size -- too big to give away and turning paler in color.  What am I going to do with them?  Detesting waste, I went online and looked up Cucumber Soup recipes.  I settled for 2 that I had all the ingredients already, prepared them, and the 1st one was by far the most delicious. I list the recipe below.

When you come in from the practice field, hot, sweaty, tired and starving, there's nothing so refreshing as a cold bowl of Vichyssoise.  The dogs agree, and lap it up.

Here's Lucky, the only one who usually holds the vessel between her paws, enjoying her cold Cucumber soup.  Does this classify her as a gourmet?  I think, yes!

The recipe:
Lucky Lucy LuLu, licking the pot clean.


3 cucumbers (or 2 huge ones), score the skin down the length of cuke with fork tines so they will chop more finely. Cut into 1" chunks.
1 can cream of potato soup
1 can chicken broth
2 tsp. vinegar
1 sprig tarragon, chopped fine, or can use 2 tsp tarragon vinegar if no fresh tarragon is available.
8 oz. sour cream (lite)
1 tbsp honey
1 cup whole milk
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine broth and chunks of cucumber in processor in 3 or 4 batches, liquify and place in bowl. Blend potato soup, sour cream, vinegar and honey together in food processor. Combine with chicken broth and cucumber mixture. Add milk. Stir with wire whisk until blended. Refrigerate until cold. Garnish with parsley if desired.

NOTES: More delicious if chilled overnight for flavors to marry.  Keeps several days in refrigerator.

Next year I will try dehydrating cucumber sticks and giving them to my dogs.  I bet they will love gnawing on them too.

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