Ah, summertime, when gardens flourish and near strangers pull you aside to offload their spare produce. I still fondly remember the box of free squashes a neighbor set on their lawn last year. I lugged home a zucchini that stretched 2 and a half feet, with another foot in circumference. I could have killed a man with that club, but endeavored instead to kill a man with my still novice cooking skills. Good times.
But this year, I received…cucumbers. What does one do with cucumbers? Everyone I asked, including Google, just talked about salads. I felt pretty clever putting together fried cucumbers the other week, but this week I decided on something a little sweeter.
Zucchini bread is fantastic, and cucumber bread is apparently indistinguishable…although the name still sounds anything but appetizing.
I mostly went off this recipe, albeit replacing the pecans with blueberries and halving the ingredients to make only one loaf.
Cucumber Bread with Blueberries
Yield: 1 loaf
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Bake Time: 50 minutes to 1 hour
1 medium cucumber (approx. 1 to 1.5 cups when shredded)
½ cup vegetable oil
1 cup white sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1.5 cups flour
½ tablespoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt (separated)
⅛ teaspoon baking powder
Dash ground cloves
2 handfuls blueberries
Cut the cucumber in half lengthwise, scooping out the seeded portion with a spoon.
Roughly chop the remaining cucumber, then shred in a food processor. Place shredded cucumber in a colander with ⅛ teaspoon salt for 30 minutes, occasionally squeezing out the excess moisture.
While waiting on the cucumber, preheat the oven to 325 F and spray a 5×9 loaf pan with baking spray.
Stir eggs, vegetable oil, sugar, and vanilla extract together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, ⅛ teaspoon salt, baking powder, nutmeg, and cloves. Blend dry ingredients into wet mixture until batter is well combined, then add shredded cucumber and blueberries to the mixture.
Spoon batter into the loaf pan, cooking in oven for 50 minutes to 1 hour, until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out clean. Allow loaf to cool in the pan for ten minutes before moving onto a cooling rack or fresh plate.