Sunday, September 30, 2012

Bumper Crop 1: Zucchini Bread

What do you do with a bunch of giant zucchini's from the garden? I've found a few good uses for the abundance of zucchini that came from my garden last year. These summer squash (I know this is a little late) can grow from a perfectly usable size to something bearing more resemblance to a skinny watermelon in a blink. Often the larger zucchini lack a little in flavor, so I'm not advocating that you grow them so large. If you truly want the best flavor harvest them when they are between 5 and 6 inches long. Zucchini bread is probably my favorite use for the larger zucchini you'll end up with if you aren't paying attention.

Zucchini bread is really a cake. It is quite sweet and I find it rather addictive. Make sure you have someone to share this with because it is hard to stop eating it once you've sliced off that first piece. I've perfected my recipe for Zucchini bread since last summer. I found a balance of white and brown sugar that seems to work quite well. The best way to show off this bread is to use the best cinnamon you can find. I get mine from here ( This cinnamon is the sweetest most fragrant cinnamon I have found. Trust me it makes a huge difference in any dish calling for cinnamon.

Recipe for Bradley's Zucchini Bread follows

Bradley's Zucchini Bread
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (435g)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (7g)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda (5g)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder (5g)
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon (7g)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/4 cups brown sugar (275g)
  • 1 cups white sugar (200g)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 1/4 cups grated zucchini (on the finer side, do not drain any excess liquid)
  • 1 1/4 cups roughly chopped walnuts or walnut pieces
Preheat oven to 325ยบ F
Grease two 4"x8" bread loaf pans (I really like my Pyrex)

Sift flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon together in a bowl. (Sifting is more important than you might think, so do it!)

Cream the eggs, oil, vanilla and almond extracts, and sugar together in a large bowl or stand mixer using the paddle attachment. Add sifted ingredients to the creamed mixture, and stir until just combined. Stir in zucchini and nuts until combined. Pour batter into greased loaf pans.
Bake for 50 to 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes. Use a knife to cut the edges away form the loaf pan. Remove bread from pan, and completely cool on a cooling rack.

Notes: The baking time will likely be closer to 70 minutes if using glass bread pans. You should let the bread cool for at least 1 hour before slicing it.

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