Delicious in summer, as a salad, side or buffet dish, with grilled meats or ham. Very versatile -- served with a generous garnish of jumbo shrimps on a bed of arugula, crusty bread and chilled wine, it's a light lunch.
If you're using a tender English cucumber, there is no need to peel or remove seeds. If you're using the thick, old-fashioned type of cucumber, you'll need to peel it, halve lengthwise, and remove the seeds.
Chop the cucumber into quite tiny dice.
Put the dice in a sieve or colander and spinkle with salt. Leave, covered, for about 30 minutes to drain off liquid.
Put the cheese in a bowl and stir or whip until smooth.
Add the mayonnaise, nutmeg and Tabasco, and stir until well mixed and smooth.
Soften the gelatine in 1/2 of the chicken stock, and warm over gentle heat until stock is hot. Stir well, take off heat, and stir in rest of stock. Let it cool down a little while you do the rest.
Drain the cucumber by shaking the sieve, and pat lightly with kitchen paper.
Oil a mould which will hold about 4 cups of mixture.
Stir or whip the cream-cheese mixture into the stock. Season with pepper and salt, and add the cucumber dice, chives and parsley. Fold in well.
When the cucumber mixture starts to thicken, whip the cream until soft peaks form, and fold into the mixture.
Add the lemon juice and stir in well.
Pour into the oiled mould, and leave in refrigerator to set, 6 hours or overnight.
Turn out on a pretty plate, on shredded lettuce, or serve with a border of juicy jumbo shrimp.