Mizeria Is The Refreshing And Creamy Cucumber Salad You Should Know

Is there anything more refreshing than a crisp, juicy cucumber on a sweltering day? The fruit is about 96% water and has a mild taste that makes eating it all day a pleasant treat. Cucumbers can be eaten year-round, but they're a summer delicacy in our hearts and can be found in a number of warm weather recipes, like a cucumber gin gimlet or green gazpacho.

Then, of course, there's the classic cucumber salad. Thin slices of cucumber with salt and vinegar make for a delicious dish, and you should look to the Polish if you want the perfect creamy and refreshing iteration. The geniuses behind pierogies and bigos also came up with mizeria, a lush cucumber salad made with sour cream and fresh dill. The dish was allegedly invented in the 1500s when an Italian princess created it due to homesickness by combining a vegetable she was accustomed to (cucumber) with an herb from her new country (dill). To accentuate her sadness, the name mizeria (or miseria) actually means "misery" in Italian. On a brighter note, the salad is a perfect side for every barbecue, garden party, or summer pick-me-up you can think of.

How to make mizeria

Cucumber salads are often made by chopping the fruit with the skins on, but mizeria requires you to peel the outer layer first. Cut them into thin, small slices and place them in a bowl. One of best features of a cucumber is its high water content, but for authentic mizeria, you'll want a crisp, crunchy salad. Sprinkle salt on the slices and let them sit for around 15 minutes.

In the meantime, chop up anything you may want to add to your salad — red or white onion and chives aren't required, but they definitely taste amazing with it. Squeeze out the remaining liquid in the cucumbers and pat dry. In a separate bowl, combine sour cream with lemon juice, vinegar, chopped dill, salt, pepper, and a pinch of sugar. Toss the cucumbers in the mixture and top it off with your chopped onions and chives. Cover the bowl and let the mizeria chill in the fridge for about half an hour before digging in.