This summer, add cucumber to a melon salad to make it extra-crisp. We cut watermelon and cantaloupe into cubes and balls for a beautifully geometric presentation that can be eaten with toothpicks. We also tossed them as a salad, dressed with yuzu juice (available at Asian supermarkets and specialty stores), though it’s equally out-of-this-world with lime or lemon juice.
A mix of Dijon mustard, briny capers, chopped cucumber, and dill brings unexpected flavor and crunch to deviled eggs. It's easy to forget that these cocktail snacks are low in fat -- not to mention high in protein and calcium.
Diced roasted beets (and crisp cucumber) are like colorful confetti on top of grilled asparagus. Roasting is a great way to cook beets; it concentrates juices, intensifies flavor, and yields tender roots.
We think of watermelon as the stuff of fruit salads, but it's also great in savory ones. In this Vietnamese- and Thai-inspired recipe, melon and cucumber are the cool contrast to sliced chile and grilled pork (chicken works, too).