Kay Wheeler Moore

Welcome to my blog

Hello. . .

The Newfangled Country Gardener is for anyone who has a garden, would like to have a garden, or who simply enjoys eating the garden-fresh way. I don't claim to be an expert; in this blog I'm simply sharing some of the experiences my husband and I have in preparing food that is home-grown.

About the author

Kay Wheeler Moore is the author of a new cookbook, Way Back in the Country Garden, that features six generations of recipes that call for ingredients that are fresh from the garden. With home gardening surging in popularity as frugal people become more resourceful, this recipe collection and the stories that accompany it ideally will inspire others to cook the garden-fresh way and to preserve their own family food stories as well. The stories in this book center around the Three Red-Haired Miller Girls (Kay's mother and aunts) who grew up in Delta County, TX, with their own backyard garden so lavish that they felt as though they were royalty after their Mama wielded her kitchen magic on all that was homegrown. Introduced in Kay's previous book, Way Back in the Country, the lively Miller Girls again draw readers into their growing-up world, in which a stringent economic era--not unlike today's tight times--saw people turn to the earth to put food on the table for their loved ones. The rollicking yarns (all with recipes attached) have love, family, and faith as common denominators and show how food evocatively bonds us to our life experiences.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Cukes in a flavorful soup keep things way cool

I always thought the saying was, “as cool as a cucumber,” but this Hot Cucumber Soup was a way-cool summertime dish.

A neighbor blessed us with some cucumbers from his garden. Besides cucumbers and onions in vinegar or diced up for a salad, what other recipes can a cook find that call for this particular fresh veggie item?

How about looking in my own cookbook? There on the pages of Way Back in the Country Garden (I had forgotten about this particular entry) was the Hot Cucumber Soup recipe. It used on-hand recipe ingredients and could be prepared in a jiffy. Can’t beat those qualifications.

Diced cucumbers and onions are cooked, along with some spices, in low-sodium chicken broth. To serve warm I added a scoop of plain yogurt and a bit of fresh mint for garnish. (Don’t skip the yogurt. I used the Greek variety—doesn’t everyone these days?) I waited for Hubby’s reaction.

“Cucumbers. In a soup? This is really good.” He clearly didn’t remember it from the first-time around, when I was taste-testing recipes for Country Garden, years ago. Well, clearly I hadn’t remembered it either. It made only enough for two servings, but I have more cucumber and the other ingredients, so we’ll repeat tonight.

Anything that doesn’t require heating up the oven qualifies as being “cool as a cucumber”.

Hot Cucumber Soup

2 teaspoons butter
1 cucumber
2 cups chicken stock (I used lower-sodium variety)
2 green onions
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt (try a sodium-free variety)
pinch nutmeg
2 teaspoons fresh mint leaves
2 tablespoons plain yogurt

In large saucepan melt butter. Peel cucumber and cut in half lengthwise. Remove seeds and cut cucumber into thin slices. Sauté for 2 minutes. Chop onions; add them to the pan along with chicken stock and spices. Simmer 5 minutes. Serve hot topped with yogurt and mint. Makes 2 servings.

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