Preserving cucumbers is a great way to make the most of your harvest by allowing you to keep them for later when cucumbers are no longer being produced in your garden and sales are few and far between while they are out of season. Here are a few simple ways to preserve cucumbers.
Ways to preserve cucumbers
Cucumbers are a short-lived fruit that we seem to be able to grow in abundance. They don’t like growing with potatoes, aromatic herbs or melons and are easy to train to grow up a trellis, especially if you have limited space. Once harvested, cucumbers only seem to survive for up to a week without going off. This has a lot to do with their high water content.
These delicious fruits liked to be store in a cool area. If your house is hot, like ours, store them in the fridge. If not, you can store them on the bench for up to one week.
When you think of dehydrating vegetables, cucumbers are likely not at the top of your list. The good news is that if you are looking for a way to preserve cucumbers you can use them to make cucumber chips.
These keto-friendly chips, can be flavoured with any of your favourite combinations. They make an amazing chip for your favourite garlic and dill dip. Simply slice with a mandolin slicer and season how you wish. Place on your dehydrator trays in a single layer and run at 125˚f or 52˚C for 6 to 12 hours, depending on the thickness of your slices. They will be done when they don’t bend and easily break into pieces.
Dehydrated cucumbers can also be ground down into a powder. This powder can be added o dressings, sauces and even scrambled eggs.
Cucumbers are often not frozen. Due to the high water content, most people do not think it is possible to freeze cucumbers. The truth is, you do have options for freezing if you wish. For cucumbers, you can freeze them in a brine solution as if you are using them to make pickles. After thawing, you can rinse them but the brine flavour will remain.
Another way is to wash and dry the cucumbers. If you want them peeled, do it now. Then cut them into bite-sized chunks or slices and line them on a lined baking tray. Place the tray in the freezer for a couple of hours, until the cucumbers are solid, then remove the chunks or slices from the tray and place in a freezer bag and back into the freezer.
Cucumbers could also be processed first in a blender or food processor and then packed into ice cube trays. Place the trays in the freezer, and when frozen, remove and place in a freezer bag.
To thaw the cucumber, add directly to the blender or food processor with all of the other ingredients when making a smoothie or dip. To remove some of the excess water, thaw them in a bowl in the fridge and strain before using.
Canning is the most popular way to preserve cucumbers. Cucumbers make pickles one of the most popular canned snacks. You can use many great pickle brine recipes available online or experiment with your own. The key is to use at least 50 percent vinegar in your brine solution to inhibit the growth of bacteria. You could try these Refrigerator Bread and Butter Pickles, or these Refrigerator Pickles.
Cucumbers are so refreshing, so why not capture all that deliciousness by juicing your cucumbers. This juice can then be frozen in ice cubes, or used to make jelly. Add the frozen cucumber juice ice cubes to smoothies, or sparkling water.
Jams and Jelly
Or, maybe try this cucumber mint jam.
Fermenting cucumbers is not as hard as you may think. Made with a salt brine, these fermented pickles have lots of added herbs and spices to increase the flavour, though you can easily adapt the recipe to suit your taste.
Well, there you have it. There are so many ways to preserve cucumbers, so you shouldn’t have any go to waste this cucumber season. Maybe you will like these ways to use cucumbers as well.