Friday, July 9, 2010

A Tale of Three Zucchinis

This is hard for me to believe, but my mother, whose garden covered fully one third of our one-acre lot, didn't do that much with zucchini. I only remember having it fried. It's still my favorite way to have it and the first zucchini of the season is always ceremoniously rushed into the kitchen, thinly sliced, coated in flour and fried in hot butter until JUST crisp.

Rebecca told me about roasting zucchini last year at this time and that is a dish we really like and make often. I start by chunking up a few potatoes in generously-sized pieces. I toss them in olive oil and sea salt and pepper. Slam them into a roasting pan and pop them in a hot oven for a head start of about ten minutes. Meanwhile, chunk up the zucchini in like-sized pieces, toss in the olive oil, salt and pepper. When the potatoes' head start is over, add the zucchini to the pan and stir them in a bit with the potatoes and allow to roast for another ten minutes or so. Serve immediately. Rebecca now tells me that she has added red onion to this dish. How brilliant! I love onion and can't believe I didn't think of this myself.

But the crown jewel of zucchini season is chocolate zucchini bread. Moist and cakey, it really just tastes like chocolate cake to everyone (especially children) but you're actually getting squash into them. I just made a double batch, which produced three good-sized loaves and four mini-loaves. I took a loaf to the beach with Brooks and his friends yesterday. We're going swimming at another friend's tomorrow and I'll take a loaf then. I also took a loaf to some new neighbors this past weekend. It's nice to have on hand for these occasions and it's always well recieved.

Last year, I made about a dozen loaves of bread that I wrapped up and put in the freezer. Mainly I pulled them out for quick breakfasts for the kids on school days. It was a fine option, and I might do some of that this year, but I'm planning to mostly shred the zucchini and freeze that, so that I can make fresh bread throughout the year. The frozen stuff is good, but it's no substitute for fresh.

Here is the recipe:

DB's Chocolate Zucchini Bread

3 eggs
1 c. vegetable oil
2 c. sugar
1 T vaniila
2 c. shredded, peeled zucchini
2 - 2 1/2 c. flour
1/2 c. cocoa
1 t. salt
1 t. baking soda
1 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. baking powder

Preheat oven to 350. In medium bowl, mix eggs, oil, sugar and vanilla. Stir in zucchini. Combine dry ingredients; add to zucchini mixture and mix well. Pour into 2 greased loaf pans. Bake for one hour.

1 comment:

  1. Just as soon as I get me a kitchen again I'll head for this bread. Sounds lovely.


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