baking sweets vegetables

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

29 August 2019

So much has happened since I last wrote here in the spring — our Gravenstein apples ripened, were picked and turned into pie, and are now a distant memory until next year; my little baby is on the cusp of being six years old and has started school; I’ve written a few more articles for the local paper; the late afternoon light and crisp breeze is a definite harbinger of fall; it’s zucchini season.

Lucky are those who don’t grow their own gardens but are given their friends’ and neighbors’ produce (this is me raising my hand). Zucchini is typically something – I’ve noticed – that the gardener gives away with a look of desperation and cheerfulness, something to the effect of “there’s more where that came from!” accompanied by a smile/grimace.

But seriously — give me your zucchini. I’ll make soup, frittata, galette, a stir-fry with garlic and chickpeas, and cake.

Not just any cake of course and not a bread, though I’ve been on the hunt for a really good, walnut-loaded zucchini bread for years. No, I’m talking deep, dark, dense chocolate-zucchini cake that is as good for dessert as it is for an afternoon pick-me-up.

I riffed an old recipe on this site to make this cake, which I made in a tube pan. I considered adding in nuts or topping with a chocolate glaze but as often happens I forgot/didn’t have time and the cake, with its bits of zucchini and fudgey chocolate chips baked into the batter, was just perfect as it was. Not fancy, but who could ever call zucchini fancy?

I’m not feeling ready for summer to end — we’ve practically lived outside these past months and have spent as much time as possible at various pools, the river, even a few camping trips here and there. Although on the flip side I’m looking forward to a bit of rain to refresh our lawn/backyard (I can’t justify watering grass in the summer) and am planning to use the winter “lull” to research native plants to put in our backyard next year. Maybe 2020 will be the year we actually plant vegetable boxes and make a real go of out; I imagine lots of kale and, yes, my own zucchini. Cross fingers I come back here in a year to update this post with the zucchini bread of my dreams. Until then, cake.

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