Tuesday, July 11, 2017

4 Cool Health Benefits of Cukes plus Cool and Creamy Salad Recipe from author Cleo Coyle

Ever wonder where the phrase 
"cool as a cucumber" came from?

Cleo Coyle has a partner in
crime-writing—her husband.
Learn about their books
by clicking here and here.

The inside of a cucumber is 20 degrees cooler than the outside. Too bad we can't claim the same advantage on these sweltering summer days! Marc and I do the next best thing, we eat them like crazy. 

Crunchy, cold cukes are supremely satisfying in summer. Their B vitamins make them a great pick-me-up food. They're also hydrating. And staying properly hydrated is a real health concern these days, not only in summer but all year round. 

Apparently, the Roman Emperor Tiberius insisted on cucumbers daily during summer and winter. The Romans used greenhouses to provide them for him every day of the year. Below you'll find one of our favorite ways to put cucumbers on the table...

If you like buttermilk ranch dressing but never have buttermilk on hand and don't want to use bottled dressing, try this super-fast creamy, cool, and crunchy salad. It pairs beautifully with grilled meats and fish, making it a fantastic salad for summer cookouts. 

May you eat with the joy of summer! 

~ Cleo

To download a free PDF copy 
of this recipe that you can 
print, save, or share, click here.

Click for Free Recipe PDF.

Cleo's Cool & Creamy 
Cucumber Salad

Yield: About 4 servings 


2 medium to large chilled cucumbers
1 small red onion (or 1/2 medium to large red onion)
3 (or so) tablespoons cold sour cream (*see my note below)
Fresh dill
Salt and pepper (to your taste)

*Note from Cleo: You can substitute crema Mexicana or creme fraiche for this recipe, but do not use yogurt, which is too tangy. The sour cream provides a sweeter, creamier flavor that (combined with the dill) mimics a lovely buttermilk ranch dressing. I hope you enjoy it!

Directions: You can either peel the skin from the cucumbers or keep the skins on for extra fiber. (See a great use for cucumber skin in my tips below.) Cut the cucumbers into thin slices. Cut the red onion into thin slices. Toss both well with sour cream and the fresh dill. Salt and pepper to taste. White pepper (used sparingly) makes a pretty presentation. Garnish with a bit more fresh dill.


* SUNBURN SOOTHER: Use the skin of a cucumber to soothe your sunburn or skin irritations, the same way you would use aloe for sunburn. 

* EASY, SOOTHING SPA TREATMENT: Place a slice over each eye. The cool feel of it is incredibly soothing, the scent is lovely, and the anti-inflammatory properties help reduce puffiness.

Cleo and her (home office) 
Cucumber Spa

 Because cucumbers have B vitamins and electrolytes, they can restore the nutrients you need during sleep. So if you've had a few too many cocktails, eat cucumbers before going to bed. By morning, the intensity of any hangover headache will be reduced.

Mr. Fellows appreciates 
the Hangover Cure.

* HEALTH BENEFITS: The fiber in cucumbers helps us eliminate toxins from our bodies. Cucumbers relieve bad breath and may help fight some forms of cancer, promote joint health, and reduce cholesterol. The potassium and magnesium in cukes help regulate blood pressure. The cucumber has been found to be beneficial for preventing and treating kidney stones--and it's believed to be helpful to diabetic patients (it contains a hormone needed by cells of the pancreas for producing insulin). Read more here. And now...

*  *  * 



Mystery Lovers' Kitchen is celebrating its 7-year anniversary this month! Join in the fun by entering our photo contest. Five winners will receive the prize package below: a set of 9 signed books from all of us crime-writing cooks here at the Kitchen, along with a beautiful, custom-designed tote bag. How to enter? Click here or on the image below...

5 winners will receive 9 signed books
and 1 custom-designed tote bag!
Click here to learn more, and...

☕ ☕ ☕

Eat (and read) with joy! 

~ Cleo Coyle

New York Times bestselling author of
The Coffeehouse Mysteries 

Alice and Marc in Central Park. 
Together we write as Cleo Coyle. 

Learn more about us here.
Friend us on facebook here.
Follow us on twitter here.
Visit our online coffeehouse here.

☕ ☕ ☕



Find out by watching our fun,
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or view it on Facebook

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Our new Coffeehouse Mystery

is now a bestselling hardcover! 

Top 10 Best Mysteries 
for Book Clubs 2017

A "Most Wanted"
Mystery Guild Selection

To buy now, click links for... 


This culinary mystery includes
more than 25 delicious recipes!
To get the Free Recipe Guide, 


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The Coffeehouse Mysteries are bestselling
works of amateur sleuth fiction set in a landmark
Greenwich Village coffeehouse, and each of the
16 titles includes the added bonus of recipes. 


See mini plot summaries 
for every title and news on
 Cleo's next release!

🔎 🔎 🔎

Marc and I also write
The Haunted Bookshop Mysteries

To get a free title checklist, 
with mini plot summaries, 

To learn more about the 
books and meet Jack Shepard, 
our PI ghost...

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  1. I still remember large bowls of this salad on my aunt's farmhouse lunch table -- we always seemed to visit during some kind of harvest! -- and it remains a fave. Thanks for all the cucumber fun, Cleo!

    1. There are so many health benefits to cucumbers...I didn't have the space to list them all! (Preventing and treating kidney stones, headaches, and migraines, and on and on.) It's no wonder the "old timers" in my family (as my father would put it) added them to salads and even crunched them whole (like bananas). Glad you enjoyed the post, Leslie, and we hope you're enjoying the summer (and all its good eats).

      ~ Cleo Coffeehouse Mystery.com
      “Where coffee and crime are always brewing…”
      Cleo Coyle on Twitter

  2. Lovely post, Cleo! My Italian MIL did something similar and it was awesome. Can't wait to try it. Hugs.

    1. The high heat and humidity are sweeping into New York City this week, and Marc and I *wish* we could be cool as the inside of a cucumber. But we'll settle for eating one--or this cool and creamy salad. Thanks for dropping in today, MJ, we appreciate it. Have a great week!

      ~ Cleo Coffeehouse Mystery.com
      “Where coffee and crime are always brewing…”
      Cleo Coyle on Twitter

  3. You are always very cool, and this is wonderful.
    Cucumbers add a nice fresh crunch to sandwiches, too.

    1. Aw, thanks, Libby, you're a sweetheart, and pretty cool yourself. Love the idea of adding cuckes to sandwiches (and not just cucumber sandwiches, natch!). A great way of adding textured crunch to your lunch. It's always, always a pleasure to see you in the Kitchen. Marc and I hope you're enjoying the tastes of summer!

      ~ Cleo Coffeehouse Mystery.com
      “Where coffee and crime are always brewing…”
      Cleo Coyle on Twitter

    2. August is my granddaughter's first birthday and we are taking her and her mom to Maine for a vacation. Lobster, blueberries, and Seal Cove Goat Farm pizza! http://www.mainegoatcheese.com/

  4. That is a wonderful salad. I've made similar. I will have to get some cukes and fresh dill!

    1. Pat - Thank you for stopping by today! Fresh dill is such a lovely treat, a wonderful combo with the cucumbers, red onions, and sour cream. Marc and I wish you all the best for a bountiful summer!

      ~ Cleo Coffeehouse Mystery.com
      “Where coffee and crime are always brewing…”
      Cleo Coyle on Twitter

  5. I think i actually fell in love with my husband because he often makes cucumber sandwiches! The recipe looks perfect for this sizzling week - and you all look adorable in your cheerleader uniforms! Thank you all for 7 years of deliciousness, fun, and shared memories. Love you all!

    1. Laine - It is indeed a sizzling week, which means staying cool (literally) is job one. :) What a wonderful foodie story about your husband--and, come to think of it, you could almost call this salad a "Cucumber Sandwich without the Bread" Salad (with the sour cream standing in for cream cheese--and no green food coloring, which is a tradition for some). Finally, thank you for the nice words about our blog. I can't believe it's seven years! Seems like yesterday we were putting up our first posts. But time flies, doesn't it? In a blink it will be ten years, and I hope we're all still here, sharing and enjoying the community--made worthwhile because of special readers like you. Sending love and our very best wishes for a delicious summer!

      ~ Cleo Coffeehouse Mystery.com
      “Where coffee and crime are always brewing…”
      Cleo Coyle on Twitter

  6. I love cucumbers and love this post! Thanks for sharing!