Cucumbers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Some cucumbers are treated with a wax coating after they are picked. Do not wash these before storing, but wash thoroughly or peel before consuming. Avoid cucumbers with ends that are shriveled or withered.
Cucumbers are best consumed raw. They have a mild taste and cool crunch that makes them a great addition to any salad or sandwich.
Try the following:
- Mix sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, olives, and feta cheese for a Greek-style side dish
- Jazz up your water by adding mint leaves and cucumber
- Slice cucumbers into thick slices and dip them in your favorite hummus
- Combine them with cheese or sliced turkeyin a sandwich
- Cucumber juice, alone or combined with the juice of other vegetables, such as carrot and celery, makes a healthful and refreshing drink
- Puree cucumbers with tomatoes, green peppers, and onions to make a chilled gazpacho soup
Some people find some types of cucumber hard to digest, but the conventional, large cucumber seen on most grocery shelves are sometimes known as “burpless,” because they are easier to digest.
Being relatively high in vitamin K, a high consumption of cucumber could have an effect on blood clotting. People who use warfarin, or Coumadin, or similar blood-thinning drugs should not increase their intake of cucumber suddenly without consulting a doctor.
Each year, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) produces a list of fruits and vegetables with the highest levels of pesticide residue, known as the Dirty Dozen.
Cucumbers are high on the pesticide residue list.
The EWG suggest buying organic cucumber to reduce the risk of pesticide exposure.
Some cucurbitacins are known to be toxic. Consuming these could be hazardous. People are advised not to eat the plant on which cucumbers grow, and some fruits of the same family, namely the bottle gourd, have caused illness.
The concentration of cucurbitacins in the everyday cucumber are unlikely to cause toxicity, and their nutritional benefits far outweight any risks of pesticide or natural poisoning.