Do More with Summer Veggies

Not sure what to do with all your fresh veggies? Try these cheesy cucumber bites, plus check out the recipe roundup for quick pickles, zucchini ideas, and more.
Alpine-Style Cucumber Bites

Photo Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin

’Tis the season for an abundance of fresh vegetables, whether they are ripe and ready in your own garden, a gift from a neighbor’s bounty, the farmers market, or grocery store. But are you not sure what to do with all of them beyond your usual dishes? For a different idea to use cucumbers, try these cheesy cucumber bites topped with a cheesy spread and salmon (or skip the salmon if you prefer) plus check out the recipes below for quick pickles, zucchini ideas, and more.

To use zucchini cores that might be left over from julienning zucchini “noodles” or another use, check out Dan Barber’s Zucchini Brochettes on Save The Food, plus peruse the organization’s many other recipes to make the most of food and avoid waste.

Alpine-Style Cucumber Bites

Makes 36 | Recipe courtesy Wisconsin Cheese

1 (8-ounce) package Crystal Farms Original Cream Cheese, softened
6 ounces Uplands Pleasant Ridge Reserve cheese, shredded (1½ cups)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Coarsely ground pepper, to taste
2 large English cucumbers
1 (4-ounce) package smoked salmon, flaked
Snipped fresh dill, for garnish

  1. Beat the cream cheese, Pleasant Ridge Reserve, garlic, and Worcestershire sauce in a large bowl until blended. Season with pepper to taste.
  2. Cut cucumbers into ½-inch slices. Pipe or spread cheese mixture on each slice, top with salmon. Garnish with dill. Refrigerate until serving.

Editor’s Note: Alpine-style cheese like Gruyère, Emmentaler, and Fontina are full-bodied cheeses with rich, nutty flavor.

Quick Pickles

PHOTO TERRY BRENNAN, FOOD STYLING LARA MIKLASEVICS

Do More with Your Veggies

Quick Pickle Recipes

Make refrigerator pickles—or quick pickles—in minutes with these easy ideas from Twin Cities culinary instructor Jason Ross.

Zucchini and Summer Squash with Dried Tomato and Caper Vinaigrette Recipe

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Zucchini-Feta Fritters with Hummus Dip Recipe

Rethink veggies with crispy feta-studded fritters that may even win over finicky kids.

Rosemary Chicken Salad Stuffed Tomatoes Recipe

A fresh take on chicken salad packs easily for a picnic or potluck and offers a lighter option at backyard barbecues

Help Save Earth: Make Ugly Vegetable Pasta

Have ugly veggies? Instead of tossing them out, make them the stars of the show in this quick and easy pasta—plus help save the planet.

Summer Penne Primavera with Grilled Vegetables Recipe

Grilling adds depth and texture to fresh veggies in this quick-and-easy pasta that can be served warm or cold.

Cucumber Gin Cooler and Garden Variety Cocktail Recipes

These are not your garden-variety cocktails—but they do mix in some flavors you’d find in the garden.

Mary Subialka is the editor of Real Food and Drinks magazines, covering the flavorful world of food, wine, and spirits. She rarely meets a chicken she doesn’t like, and hopes that her son, who used to eat beets and Indian food as a preschooler, will one day again think of real food as more than something you need to eat before dessert and be inspired by his younger brother, who is now into trying new foods.