Zucchini Bread

Zucchini bread is an interesting creation. It's sounds like an odd choice, throwing zucchini into a loaf. My grandmother made the absolute best zucchini bread - it was one of the many dishes from her that I craved with every visit. She passed away last year, and I have been missing her baking. I looked through all the recipes I had, but didn't locate her bread recipe. Fortunately, one of my friends had given me this fantastic cookbook last year that has tons of great recipes. So, I made it with that version with a couple changes.




The first part was a matter of just cutting zucchini up into hunks and tossing it in the food processor until I had a pile of green mush. I think little boys could enjoy making this.


In a big bowl, I added all the dry ingredients and stirred until it was just combined. I didn't want to over mix it and get a tough cake. I added some vanilla extract but skipped the lemon peel.


The recipe had me mix the nuts directly into the bread, however I prefer it as a topping, like with rum cake. So, I greased and floured the pan lightly, and sprinkled some walnut chunks all around.


I poured the batter in the pan and got it in the oven, letting it bake for just about an hour. Being so thick, it took a while to bake throughout. I had to rely on the toothpick test because the color can be deceiving.


Hot out of the oven, I flipped the cake pan over onto a plate to reveal a perfect looking cake. You would never even know this has zucchini in it just by appearance. And oh my the way the nuts embed into the cake is so cute.


And there we have it, a moist slice of a lovely zucchini loaf.


And I do mean moist. Just the way I strain a lot of liquid out of cucumbers for tzatziki, zucchini holds a lot of moisture that went into the cake. The flavor was not all zucchini as you may expect - it was sweet and more cake than bread like. I knew it was good when my family tried some and just demolished it. This was different than my grandmother's version, as hers was a darker color and more bread-like than mine. I will one day track down her version, but for now I'm glad to have a cake alternative that is loaded with veggies. Next time, I will play with some more spices in the batter, and maybe add some dates for a little bit of texture. Now, talking about tzatziki for me interested in a cucumber version....

Zucchini Bread Recipe

Ingredients:

3 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 zucchini
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions:

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a bundt pan or 2 loaf pans. In a large bowl, mix flour, sugars, baking powder, and salt. Use blender to liquify zucchini. In a small bowl, beat eggs, then mix in oil, zucchini, and vanilla. Gently stir egg mixture into flour until just combined. Sprinkle nuts into the bottom of the pan, then pour in batter. Bake for about 1 hour, until toothpick shows cake is fully cooked in the center.

adapted from the good housekeeping cookbook 

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