Creamy Cucumber Salad with Fresh Dill

As the weather begins to warm up, I like to serve cold salads in numerous ways.  One of my favorites is Cucumber Salad in a Creamy Dill Sauce.  This week I was flipping through a cookbook given to me from my God-Daughter for a Christmas gift . . . “Barefoot Contessa Back To Basics” by Ina Garten, and found her version of this chilled salad.  Ms. Garten, just like me, says that she loves cucumbers.

Her recipe is different than most traditional recipes in that she uses hothouse cucumbers and yogurt to create a “lighter and sweeter” flavor, rather than mayonnaise and/or buttermilk.  There is also no sugar in this, which you might want to add if you like.  One of the noticeable differences unique to her recipe that really makes a huge difference is that she drains the excess liquid from both the cucumbers and the yogurt.  This produces a more silky, creamy sauce that is far less runny!

I also used some fresh dill from my garden instead of the jarred variety.  Ina states that this cucumber salad is perfect to pair with grilled chicken and guess what we had for dinner?  Grilled chicken!  So I had to try her recipe!  This recipe makes quite a lot, so I recommend cutting it in half if you don’t have many people to serve.

Creamy Cucumber Salad with Fresh Dill

What You Need:

  • 4 – 5 hothouse cucumbers, seeds removed and thinly sliced with peel left on
  • 1 – 2 small red onions, thinly sliced and then cut into half rounds
  • 1-1/2 Tbsp. Kosher salt (I used sea salt)
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk Greek yogurt (reduced from 4 cups in the original recipe)
  • 1 cup sour cream (or 2 cups of sour cream with no yogurt)
  • 2 Tbsp. champagne vinegar (or red wine vinegar is fine too)
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh dill
  • 1 tsp. sugar (optional)
  • 1-1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper (I used 2 – 3 tsp.)
  • 2 tsp. sea salt (my addition, since it’s in desperate need of it)

Instructions

  1. In a LARGE bowl, mix the cucumbers, red onions, and 1-1/2 Tbsp. of salt.
  2. Pour them into a large colander and suspend over another large bowl.
  3. Wrap the bowl and colander with plastic wrap.
  4. Place this in the refrigerator to DRAIN for at least 4 hours or overnight.
  5. Discard the liquid that collects in the bowl.
  6. Pour the yogurt into a sieve/fine mesh strainer that is lined with a paper towel and suspend over another medium sized bowl.
  7. Wrap the bowl and sieve in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
  8. Discard the liquid that collects in this bowl too.
  9. When the cucumbers are ready, roll them up in paper towels or a clean kitchen towel.
  10. Press the paper towels/kitchen towel lightly to remove most of the liquid from the cucumbers.
  11. Place the cucumbers and yogurt in a large bowl.
  12. Add the sour cream, vinegar, dill, 2 tsp. sea salt and the pepper.
  13. Toss well.
  14. Refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to blend (this is a very important step not to ignore!).
  15. Sprinkle again with salt and freshly ground black pepper if you prefer.
  16. Garnish with snips of fresh dill for color!
  17. Serve chilled.

Notes

very slightly adapted from Ina Garten’s “Barefoot Contessa Back To Basics”

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Comments

  1. says

    Love the salad Roz. I’m with you on the warm weather and cool salads. Those photos provide for true flavor image… AMAZING

    Hope you and yours are doing well, especially after those nasty tornadoes. We are praying for all who have been affected!

  2. says

    Hi,

    I also received the same cookbook for Christmas… Barefoot Contessa Back To Basics by Ina Garten. And I made this same salad about a week ago… too funny! Love your blog.

    Christine

  3. says

    Nothing beats a good cucumber salad and yours and Ina’s sounds spectacular Roz. I’m not a sweet cucumber salad person, so I enjoy not having the sugar in it. I rarely ever use any other cucumber but the hothouse one. It’s so easy to use and you don’t have to worry about those pesky seeds.
    Sam

  4. says

    Wow, that is a beautiful dish! It’s a very different type of cucmber salad compared to what’s popular here. I do like creamy though!

  5. says

    I just stopped to read this post, and , well, find out how to make this delish salad.

    I love cucumber salad ,but only try it in Japanese salad style.
    This salad seems very yummy and easy receipt.

  6. says

    This creamy cucumber salad looks just delicious. I’m growing some dill in my herb garden this year so I am really looking forward to trying it soon. Thank you so much for linking it to the Hearth and Soul blog hop.

    I’ve also joined with five other ladies who enjoy Ina Garten’s recipes to form a new group called Ina’s Garden. We will be cooking and baking together, but as we are just getting started this month, we have invited people to link up any Ina recipe they may have blogged about. Your beautiful salad would be perfect and I would love for you to come along and join in. Here is a link if you would like to join us.
    http://www.21stcenturyhousewife.com/index/Blog/Entries/2011/4/21_Entry_1.html
    Have a lovely day!

  7. says

    This sounds amazing. One of my favorite recipes growing up was when my mom made cucumbers with sour cream!!! I wonder what this would taste like if you used plain greek yogurt? Probably yummy!

  8. says

    I haven’t made a cucumber salad in ages and this one sounds delicious. Thanks for linking it to our new group, Ina’s Garden and Meatless Mondays.

    I hope to be here for the weekend linky.

  9. says

    Hi Rozzy baby, sorry I have been incognito for a few weeks but I am seeing light at the end of the tunnel. This lovely recipe reminds me so much of my granny who would make lovely English cucumber salads for a cool treat on a hot summer night! So delicious and nutritious! I have to tell you a silly thing. I had no idea Ina was the barefoot contessa until I flipped on the food network channel the other day to get some inspiration–what a goof I am! Thanks so much for sharing this with us on the hearth and soul hop! Big hugs! Alex

  10. says

    Ooohhh…yummy! I am always into cool salads.Your cucumber salad looks so delicious! I love the combination of sour cream with cucumber. Haven’t tried this. Thanks for sharing!

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