The sign said “burpless cucumbers.” I had not noticed that my previous encounters with cucumbers were particularly burp-inducing, so I asked how this variety was different. “They don’t repeat,” the woman at the farm stand said. “The other cucumbers, they repeat in your stomach.” “Repeat?” I asked. “Oh, yes,” she said. “They repeat.” The woman behind me in line nodded vigorously.
Who knew? The burpless cucumber might be an improvement, but I would nominate several vegetables for modification first: what about wiltless lettuce, or finger-gouging-spike-less artichokes?
But I digress. I bought a handful of the cukes, which are thinner, paler, and more curved than their traditional counterparts. (They’re sold elsewhere as English cucumbers, which apparently did not raise their profile.) Aside from being seedless—the seeds are the source of the burps for the more sensitive among us—they taste the same.
A good way to use these cukes (or any, really) is in simple, a nationless summer salad—chop up equal parts tomatoes and cucumbers, then dice a block of halloumi cheese (get it in a Middle Eastern market) for a nice salty touch. Throw in some fresh chopped basil, if you like, and then a little oregano, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. It’s so quick, your company will be speechless.
Burpless cucumbers, $4 a pound at Yuno’s Farm stand, Union Square Greenmarket, Mondays and Fridays, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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