I love all of the produce that is fresh, delicious and widely available in the summer. In addition to the delicious fruits, there are also some delicious summer squashes all around, including the ever-versatile zucchini.
Now, we enjoy zucchini as a vegetable and side dish with our meal, but I also like to incorporate it into other dishes, as it is very mild in flavor and packs a good nutritional punch.
Zucchini is also good for baking. Yup, vegetable desserts. So when we picked up some zucchini at our local produce stand, I knew I'd be making a zucchini bread. And I knew I'd be trying an old family recipe. Not my own family, mind you. But that's not important. It's a recipe from the always trusty Jenni at The Gingered Whisk, and is a recipe from her grandmother.
One of the best things about this recipe is how easily it comes together.
Simply grate some zucchini...
And then combine all of the ingredients in a single bowl.
Now, as the recipe makes enough for two loaves, I decided to get creative. I divided my batter between two bowls, and folded chocolate chips into one half of the batter and diced strawberries into the other half.
Now... if you notice in that photo above, I didn't exactly divide them evenly. That was not on purpose. And, if you notice, the larger "half" is the loaf with the strawberries.
The chocolate chip loaf baked up beautifully.
The strawberry loaf, between the extra batter and the extra moisture from the strawberries...
Struggled a little bit. But that is completely my error. Believe it or not that loaf is fully cooked through. I was wary, so even gave it some extra time in the oven... but it was the combination of the moisture in the zucchini, the added moisture of the strawberries and the fact that there was just too much batter in the pan. Made the bread too moist to maintain its structure.
But both loaves were absolutely delicious.
The chocolate chip loaf was, by far, the favorite among the kiddos.
Even if the chocolate chips sank to the bottom...
And the strawberry loaf...
Was good, and the texture was improved by popping those slices into the toaster oven for a few minutes before eating them.
So here's a hint, if you decide to make zucchini bread - if you choose a moisture-heavy mix-in for your loaf, do yourself a favor and squeeze a bit of the moisture out of the zucchini after grating it!!
But thank you Jenni, and your grandmother, for this delicious recipe!!
(from The Gingered Whisk)
3 whole eggs
2 cups sugar
½ cup veggie oil
½ cup applesauce
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 cups shredded zucchini
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon cinnamon
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped strawberries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease and flour two loaf pans.
Beat the eggs until frothy.
Add in the sugar, vegetable oil, applesauce and vanilla and mix until thick and lemony colored.
Stir in the zucchini, flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and baking powder.
Divide the batter into two bowls. Into one bowl, fold in the chocolate chips, and into the other, the strawberries.
(Alternatively, choose a single mix in, fold in one cup's worth, then divide the batter between your baking pans.)
Pour into prepared loaf pans.
Bake at 350 degrees for an hour, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
Let cool in pans for 10 minutes, then remove the loaves from the pans and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.