Cucumbers, Arugula, & Such (cooked salad)

Sunday we watched Julia & Julia.  I had heard mixed reviews about the movie but I tend to enjoy anything that has to do with food… so even though the movie was pretty plotless I still enjoyed it.  Josh on the other hand, not-so-much.  Sorry and thanks for being a good sport!  It seemed the hit recipe stirring up some buzz was Julia Child’s braised cucumber recipe.  The unique part about this was I bought one from the grocery store this weekend to cook for Monday’s dinner.  Of course I had to look up Julia’s recipe and honestly I was hoping for something fun and unique.  To sum it up recipe is cooking cucumbers in butter seasoning with salt, lemon juice, and mint.  My recipe as you will see contains butter, lemon zest, and mint.  So nothing new learned but I still enjoyed the coincidence.  (I was a bit disappointed with my pictures this meal though).

Cucumber Salad


  • Cucumber
  • Arugula
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Mint, dried – just a pinch
  • Basil, fresh – chopped
  • Fennel Seed
  • Lemon Zest – of one whole lemon
  • Grape Tomatoes
  • Capers
  • Kalamata Olives
  • S&P
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • Brown Rice Couscous
  • Butter
  • S&P
  • White Wine
  • Avocado

The Raw Ingredients


1. Prep..  Cucumber: peel, deseed, and chop into 1″ chunks.  Onion: chop into thin small strips.  Garlic: mince.  Tomato: chop into thin rounds.  Basil: chop. Kalamata olives: slice into rounds.

2. Cook brown rice couscous according to package.  It will be done before the meal is finished but take off heat and leave covered, it will stay warm.

Onion and Fennel

3. In a medium skillet on low heat melt some butter, ~1 tablespoon.  Add the fennel seed, I used about 1 teaspoon, and let sit in the butter until it becomes fragrant, 1-2 minutes.  Add the onion and cook.  The idea is to infuse it with the sweet flavor of the butter and fennel.

Cucumber Added

4. Once onion is translucent add the cucumber along with a pinch or two of red pepper flakes and some s&p.  Turn up the heat to medium-high and continue to cook.  After 5 minutes or so the cucumber should be close to done.  If needed add a bit more butter and add a pinch of mint, the chopped basil, and lemon zest.

Seasoning the Cucumbers

5. Add the arugula (I used about 1/2 the box) and a solid splash of white wine.  Allow the arugula to cook down and the white wine to cook off, ~2 minutes or so.

Arugula Wilting

6. Turn off heat and add the caper, olives, and tomatoes.  Mix well and serve over brown rice couscous.

And dinner is finished!


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