Sauteed Cucumbers

We are out numbered by cucumbers. Between the volunteer Mexican sour gherkins and the intentionally planted straight eight cucumber, we’re knee-deep in cucurbits.

After plenty of salads and quick pickles, we were looking for something a bit different. Once again, Steven Satterfield’s Root to Leaf provided the necessary inspiration. Cooking cucumbers may seem odd, but it has a home in the classic French repertoire as a way to enhance their subtle, refreshing flavor while maintaining crispness. Finishing the dish with some butter and vinegar gives the impression of eating a slightly buttery pickle with just a hint of sourness. In our kitchen, this five-minute recipe will likely be a staple throughout the summer, or at least as long as the cucumbers last.  We recommend serving it in the classic French way as an accompaniment to fish.

When you're making this dish, don't throw away your cucumber peels. We'll have a delightful use for them in the coming weeks.

sauteed cucumbers steven satterfield root to leaf 

Sauteed Cucumbers

Makes 2 servings


2 tablespoons olive oil

small onion, cut into half-moons

salt and pepper

4 medium sized cucumbers, peeled and cut into ¼” discs

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon butter

  1. Over medium heat, saute the onions in the olive oil until the edges have just started to caramelize.

  2. Add the cucumbers and salt and pepper to taste.

  3. Saute the cucumbers for 3-5 minutes. They should seem cooked, but still retain some crispness.

  4. Add the vinegar and butter and serve.