Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Zucchini Bread Two Ways

As promised, here are two recipes for zucchini bread. I am a big fan of the traditional cinnamony zucchini bread. But some ten or twelve years ago, I was introduced to the concept of chocolate zucchini bread. It sounded odd, but I was hooked after one bite. It's one of the easiest chocolate desserts I know. Sometimes I make a kind of Mexican chocolate zucchini bread by adding one heaping teaspoon of cinnamon to the cocoa.
The recipe for each kind of zucchini bread makes two loaves, so what I do (or try to do) is combine the recipes to make one loaf of each kind at a time. That's how I'll present the information here; if you want to make two loaves of the same kind, I'll give some shorthand quantities at the end.
I just tried making a full (two loaf) recipe of the chocolate zucchini bread and baking it in a Bundt pan at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Worked really well, though getting it out of the pan (though greased and floured) was problematic. I think it's because the melty chocolate chips stuck to the pan. However, I scraped out the stuck parts, molded them back to the cake, and shook icing sugar over it and it looked fine. Elspeth (the birthday girl reaching the big 2) was impressed, anyway.

INGREDIENTS FOR ONE TRADITIONAL AND ONE CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI LOAF

COMMON MIXTURE
3 eggs
1 c. oil (anything but olive oil, really)
1 1/2 c. evaporated cane juice sugar
2 c. grated zucchini
1 tsp vanilla extract

TRADITIONAL LOAF DRY INGREDIENTS
1 1/2 c. whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 c. chopped toasted walnuts (optional)

CHOCOLATE LOAF DRY INGREDIENTS
1/4 c. evaporated cane juice sugar
1/2 c. chocolate chips (we love Trader Joe's Dutch process chips)
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon (optional)
1 1/4 c. whole wheat pastry flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and grease and flour two loaf pans
  2. Get out two medium-sized bowls. In one bowl, whisk together the traditional bread's dry ingredients. In the second bowl, do the same for the chocolate zucchini bread's dry ingredients (leave out the extra vanilla for now)
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the common wet ingredients and stir in the grated zucchini
  4. Pour half of this mixture into each of your other bowls (if you want to be more precise, pour the mixed ingredients into a measuring jug and calculate half from there)
  5. Stir the ingredients together in each bowl just until it all comes together
  6. Add the remaining teaspoon of vanilla extract to the chocolate bread
  7. Fill the loaf pans (one batter-type per pan, of course)
  8. Bake for one hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center of each loaf comes out clean
  9. Cool on a rack for ten minutes before removing breads from pans. Continue cooling (or slice off some and have with a good cup of tea)
These breads freeze really well. I also learned that grated zucchini freezes surprisingly well, so if you've got extra, you can save it for later use.

If you want to make two traditional loaves: 3 eggs; 1 c. oil; 1 1/2 c. sugar; 1 tsp vanilla; 2 c. grated zucchini; 3 c. flour; 1 tsp salt; 1/4 tsp baking powder; 1 tsp cinnamon; 1 tsp baking soda; 1 c. chopped nuts

If you want to make two chocolate loaves: 3 eggs; 1 c. oil; 2 c. sugar; 1 TBSP vanilla; 2 c. grated zucchini; 1 c. chocolate chips; 1/2 c. cocoa powder; 2 1/2 c. flour; 1/2 tsp salt; 2 1/2 tsp baking powder; 1 tsp cinnamon (optional); 1 1/2 tsp baking soda

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