Marinated Cucumber Salad

Cucumber Salad by Ayala Moriel
Cucumber Salad, a photo by Ayala Moriel on Flickr.
This cucumber salad is one of the things to look forward to all summer long. It is wonderful with crisp, fresh cucumbers; but originally was designed to use up tired, limp cucumbers from composte oblivion... My grandmother taught me how to make this from old cucumbers and she would sometimes also use radishes that lost their luster in the mix. You can also make a similar version with mint, onion and radishes only (perfect in the winter time!).

6 small cucumbers (this recipe would not work with field cucumbers or long English ones; although larger dill pickel cukes might do the trick)
1/2 white sweet onion (or 1 shallot; or scallions if you find raw onion to be too much)
2 Tbs apple cider vinegar
Juice from 1/2 lemon
3 Tbs olive oil or grapeseed oil
1/4 tsp salt
Lots of freshly ground peppercorns, to taste
1 Tbs chopped dill weed (optional)

Slice the onion very thinly and cover in the vinegar, salt and lemon juice.
Slice the cucumbers (if they are tired and grumpy you may also peel them).
Toss with the remaining ingredients and marinate for at least 1/2 hour before serving. Excellent the next 2 days as well and makes perfect picnic food!

Coriander and Other Discoveries

I know everyone is mad for Coriander by Kiehl's, and since I was working on a coriander themed perfume this morning (more on that at another time); I went to check it out again only to find out their entire fragrance line except Original Musk is being discontinued. Probably to make room for the shiny and new Aromatic Blends aka body mists that do not seem particularly promising, though I'm sure they will be very inoffensive.

The only essence roll-ons they had at the Robson location were Pear and Grapefruit (neither of which I like - overpowering fruity notes are only fun in shampoo, in my humble opinion). But they still had testers of a few other things, including Coriander and Cucumber.

I'm still not "getting" Coriander (it remains, to me, overly fruity - see my above comment), with a slightly floral treatment on the coriander-linalool theme, drying down to a nondescript woodsy raspberry... But fell in love with an unlabeled scent which I suspect is Pour Homme. There couldn't be a less imaginative yet more descriptive way to name it...

Pour Homme begins with a brisk, decidedly masculine surge of aromatics: pine, lime, lavender and hay. An undercurrent of musky-woody-tobacco notes keep it from being just another fougere. It's very bold, and in my humble opinion the only well-rounded, true "perfume" composition among these scents (although, Original Musk is also brilliantly constructed). While the other scents feel more like different "smells" to amuse one's nose, inspire blending and mashups, or more likely - functional uses (add to this lotion or another); Pour Homme has a beginning, middle and end like a classic perfume. Even though, most North American men will object to labeling it "perfume" and would call it "cologne". It has the classic fougere boldness that could give either a man or a woman an unlikely dosage of courage. That dry tobacco note, melding with woods and hints of raspberry ketones is intriguing and sensual and masculine in the best possible of ways.

P.s. Tomorrow's 1st task: going back to the store to beg for the tester, since no one seems to want it anyway...
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