If you were to ask my grandmother (or my mother -- or myself, for that matter) if she was "making chicken for dinner," she would grin and then reply, "Only chickens can make chickens. I am cooking chicken for dinner, though." The same would go for "making eggs" or "making bacon."
And so I think it is rather funny and odd that this same grandmother had a recipe for "cucumbers." It would seem to me that a recipe is for something you make, not something you grow. The cucumbers are sliced thinly and pickled ever so slightly in vinegar and sugar. And therefore, as far as I am concerned, by the time you are done, you have taken a cucumber and made something else altogether.
The other day a friend mentioned that she makes "quick pickles" with her cucumbers, and although I am not sure her process is the same as my grandmother's, I think it is a perfect name and I am stealing it.
They aren't exactly pickles. But they aren't just cucumbers either. They are just sort of pickly cucumbers. In this recipe, the vinegar is diluted with water, and I think that stops them from pickling all the way. Instead, they get a little limp and a little sweet, and although they are still very recognizable cucumbers, they need a new name.
These cucumbers are just like the idiom. Cool. They are refreshing and tasty, especially on a hot summer day, and are great alone as a snack or used as a relish or in a salad. I like to eat them with a sandwich, or a hunk of cheese and some nuts at lunch time.
1 large cucumber, sliced very thin
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
Bring the water, vinegar, and sugar to a boil. Pour over the cucumber slices and refrigerate for at least a day before eating.