Wish Upon A Dish: A Healthy, Flavorful, Great Summer Side Dish to go with Spicy BBQ Chicken

June 6, 2011

A Healthy, Flavorful, Great Summer Side Dish to go with Spicy BBQ Chicken

My mother, being of Swedish heritage, would make a dish here and there that her Nana taught her (her Mom passed away when she was only 8).
Nana was from Sweden and when she could no longer live by herself, she came to live in the US with my grandfather. This was when my step-grandmother learned to make German and Swedish dishes, which she passed on down to my mother, and her, to me.

I was only 3-4 so I remember her in pictures of us sitting with her in her huge easy chair, not of actually touching her.

I only remember a few dishes because my Mom cooked mostly dishes that my father loved and those I know all too well.

I do wish my sister would let me scan my Mom's recipe book, because I know there are few I can not figure out and would love the recipe for.

One I do remember making all the time growing up is a simple side dish consisting of only 3 food ingredients and 3 dressing ingredients.

Thinly sliced cucumbers, red onions and dill, grapeseed oil, apple cider vinegar, sugar and salt & pepper. Very refreshing in the summer and it can be served room temp which is great on a hot summer buffet table.

Strange as it might seem, including some vinegar in your diet may improve your blood sugar. Although vinegar has a bit of a checkered past — it has too often been hyped in weight-loss diets and miracle cures — solid research has clearly shown that it can improve glycemic control.

Now that's what I'm talking about.

I never knew this was Swedish until I started watching New Scandinavian Cooking on PBS. It tastes even better the next day and the next. The amount of each ingredient depends on how much you like each one. I personally like it vinegary so I use less oil and sugar. Kids will like this because they gravitate to tart things, just look at the sales of all those tart candies.

Swedish Cucumber Salad
makes about 3 cups
* 1 English cucumber (also known as a seedless or a burpless) or 2 large cucumbers
* 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
* 1/2 cup grapeseed oil
* 1/3 cup rice vinegar, unseasoned or, apple cider vinegar or, red wine vinegar
* 1 tablespoon sugar or honey or agave nectar
* salt & pepper to taste
* Fresh dill, chopped (you can never overdo the dill)

This goes well with BBQ and spicy dishes. If you love pickled red onions you will love this dish also. Use it on tacos, meat sandwiches or blackened fish.

Have too many zucchinis?????
You could also substitute zucchini slices for the cucumber.

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