One of the best parts about edible gardening is trying out new varieties of veggies that you’d never find at the store. Every year, when I’m planning my garden, I grow tried and true varieties, but I dedicate space for one or two new things. This year, in addition to my standard Boston Pickling, I’m trying out a new cucumber I wanted to share a review for: Dragons Egg cucumber. I got the seeds from Baker Creek, my go-to source for heirloom seeds. They describe the cucumber as:
Beautiful cream-colored fruit are about the size and shape of a large egg! Mild, bitter-free and sweet tasting, this little cucumber set massive yields in our gardens. So fun to grow, and very unique looking; great for children and all who like delicious cucumbers. We were sent this new favorite by Reinhard Kraft, a German seed collector, but this heirloom originated in Croatia.
I started my Dragons Egg cucumber plants inside on April 9th. They germinated within 3 days, and I transplanted out into the garden on May 8th. I got the first harvest June 21st, so 73 days since seeding. They have been producing steadily.
I have 6 plants in total, 3 growing on an overturned tomato cage (which really, is the only practical use for those things), and 3 growing on a frame I made from leftover chicken tunnel wire, that’s propped up on rebar stakes. Really, I’d be fine with just 3 plants. Or maybe even one. I have been harvesting a gazillion Dragons Egg cucumbers.
Which is great, because I’m really enjoying this variety. They are fresh eating cucumbers, not for pickling, and do indeed look like a bit like a chickens egg, albeit a more psychedelic color. They are oblong, with fairly smooth skin, and they range from a white to a pearly yellow. I would compare them to the popular Lemon Cucumber, but I like these better. Compared to the Lemon Cucs, I feel they can get a bit larger before getting bitter, but they are best when they are picked about the size of a large duck egg, or smaller. Once they reach soft-ball size, I think they are too seedy and I are better used for chicken treats.
I’ve been eating them peeled, in simple preparations. I’m loving them sliced and topped with local flaky sea salt, and sometimes I’ll add an aged balsamic vinegar. They are also great chopped up in asian noodle salads, or sliced and added to water. I recently found a cocktail that called for cucumbers, so I’ve got that added to recipe pile of things to make this summer.
Overall, I highly recommend Dragons Egg for a fresh eating cucumber! I’ll continue to grow these, instead of the more common Lemon Cucumbers, for my slicing and salad needs.
What new varieties are you trying out this year? Have you ever tried these Dragon Egg cucumbers?