Our dad used to make a variation of this ginger cucumber dish as an appetizer. He used a combination of cucumbers, vinegar, pepper and spices, and left it in the refrigerator as a snack before meals. He called his dish concombres, which is really just the French word for cucumbers.
Ginger Cucumber, Pickled in Vinegar
The combination of ginger cucumber, served in vinegar, makes for an excellent summer dish, because it’s light and can be served cold. It doesn’t take a whole lot of effort to make this for the first time. And, what you don’t finish can easily be stored in the refrigerator for your next meal.
Hildegard of Bingen would have liked this dish, in part because of the primary ingredients, ginger and vinegar. Hildegard thought of both ginger and vinegar as warming substances, used to promote the balance of bodily humors. You can enjoy this dish on its own, in a meal, or as part of Hildegard’s three healthy fasts.
- Red Wine Vinegar
- Grated Ginger
- Ground Pepper
Peel your cucumber and run a fork down all sides before slicing. This is an old trick, which we believe increases the surface area on each cucumber slice, for the purpose of retaining more vinegar. We use red wine vinegar, which is consistent with Hildegard’s preferred wine-based vinegars. Add ground ginger, onions and pepper and store in the refrigerator.
You can save and reuse the vinegar like a pickle-juice. In Germany, fans of Hildegard regularly consume wine-based drinking vinegar.