Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Cleo Coyle's 4 Cool Tips for Summer + A Recipe Favorite

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

ANSWER: The inside of a cucumber is 20 degrees cooler than the outside. 

Too bad we can't claim the same advantage on a sweltering hot day. Marc and I do the next best thing. We eat crunchy, cold cucumbers all summer long. 

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

Cukes are supremely satisfying. 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.

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. Think of it. With the variety we're blessed with in our 21st century markets, we can eat as richly as a Roman emperor, all year round. 

As for Marc and I, 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. Even better, you can whip it up in almost no time all. 

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

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.

 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 also has been found to be beneficial for preventing and treating kidney stones, and it's a great low-carb veg for diabetic patients, too. 

Thanks for stopping by today.  

May you...

Eat (and read) with joy!   

New York Times bestselling author
The Coffeehouse Mysteries &
Haunted Bookshop Mysteries

This is us >> Alice and Marc.
Together we write as Cleo Coyle

Visit our online coffeehouse here.
And follow us at these links...

Facebook - Twitter - Instagram

Pinterest - Bookbub - Goodreads

5 Best of Year Lists!

Our NEW Coffeehouse Mystery!

Learn more or buy at:

 Amazon * B&N

Indie * 








Free Checklist of Books in Order

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

Click for Cleo's Free Checklist of
Coffeehouse Books in Order


  1. I love cucumbers. The cucumber salad looks delicious! I am always looking for non-typical salad recipes because I can’t eat lettuce.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Chris. With all the fresh garden produce, summer is a wonderful time for crunchy, cool salads. They make great sides for cookouts, and this quick & easy one is a favorite of ours. I hope you enjoy it as much as Marc and I do. Be well, and stay safe as you enjoy the start of summer...and that goes for everyone!

      ~ Cleo
      Sign up for Cleo’s free Newsletter
      Coffeehouse Mystery.com
      Friend or Follow Cleo Coyle on Facebook

  2. Great advice about not substituting yogurt for the sour cream. Usually that is an easy sub, but, as you point out, it would spoil the end result here.
    Stay cool and safe.

    1. Cheers, Libby, thanks for dropping in today, and a very Happy Birthday Week to you! (Keep celebrations going as long as possible, I always say. :))

      Sending joy your way
      ~ Cleo

    2. Well done! Thanks for the birthday wishes.

  3. Cucumbers just make everything better. I love them in a nice slice with a dab of hummus, a little cocktail shrimp, and a sprig of dill on top. You have your own little tapas party! In fact, I may do that just now!!