Tuesday, August 11

Zucchini Bread

Yowza! What to do with all the zucchini my garden produced this year!
Zucchini is one of the easiest vegetables to grow and as such, it's known far and wide among home gardeners for overwhelming crops. 

When cooking, zucchini is treated as a vegetable and is usually cooked and served as a savory or side dish. 
Botanically, however, zucchini is really a fruit.

With zucchini, you can make Zucchini bread, sautéed zucchini, grilled zucchini, zucchini muffins, marinated zucchini salad, zucchini pancakes, zucchini fries, zucchini brownies, zucchini lasagna, zucchini frittata, zucchini pizza, zucchini quiche, zucchini in zucchini sauce, zucchini stuffed zucchini, and many other zucchini dishes!


The world’s largest zucchini on record was 69 1/2 inches long and weighed 65 lbs. Bernard Lavery of Plymouth Devon, UK, grew it.  The longest zucchini measured 2.39 m (7 ft 10.3 in) on 17 October 2005 and was grown by Gurdial Singh Kanwal (originally from India) in his garden in Brampton, Ontario, Canada
But biggest is NOT best when eating or cooking with zucchini. The most flavorful zucchinis are small to medium--small-sized and the darker the skin, the richer the nutrients.

Washed and ready for grating

History:
Zucchini, Cucurbita pepo, is a member of the cucumber and melon family. People of Central and South America have been eating zucchini for several thousand years, but the zucchini we know today is really a variety of summer squash developed in Italy, formerly referred to as green Italian squash. The Zucchini was actually first brought to the United States in the 1920s by the Italian immigrants. And although April 25th is National Zucchini Bread Day, zucchini in my area, the Midwest, and Ohio, does not come in until summer! 
Not only is the zucchini versatile to cook with, it’s also loaded with nutrients and vitamins that can help prevent cancer and heart disease. And zucchini has more potassium than a banana and is low in calories!

Shredded zucchini 

Zucchini Nut Bread

Ingredients

1 cup olive or vegetable oil
2 cups sugar 
4 eggs, beaten 
2 cups grated zucchini 
4 cups all-purpose flour 
2 teaspoon baking soda 
1 teaspoon baking powder 
1 teaspoon salt 
⅓ cup milk 
2 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups chopped walnuts or pecans, (optional )


First, mix together oil, sugar, eggs, and zucchini

Directions:

Butter and flour baking pans.  Grate unpeeled zucchini, but do not drain!  Mix first 4 ingredients, oil, sugar, eggs, and zucchini in large mixing bowl.  Add milk, vanilla, and cinnamon. Mix well.
  


Slowly add flour mixture to zucchini mixture


In a separate bowl, mix second 4 ingredients; flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Slowly and a little at a time, add dry ingredients to zucchini mixture.  Mix well.

Add  nuts, (optional).
Pour into greased and floured loaf pans and bake at 350º 


Add chopped nuts if desired

Do Not Over Bake.
Times are approximate and should be used as a guideline for your oven.

2 Large loaves: Bake for 50 to 60 minutes.
3 small loaves: Bake for 35 to 40 minutes.
Muffins: Bake for 16-20 minutes.
6 mini loaves: Bake on 2 racks for 30 minutes. Rotate ½ way through.



Cinnamon Sugar Coating

1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cinnamon
Grease loaf pans.  Mix together a little cinnamon and white sugar. Dust greased a loaf pan with cinnamon mixture.  Pour in batter.  Bake bread half-way through then sprinkle top of batter with cinnamon mixture.  The top will come out with a slightly cinnamony sweet crunch and bottom will have a cinnamon flavor without the crunch. 

Crumb Topping
½ cup regular oats                            ½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup brown sugar                           ¼ cup butter
¼ cup flour                                       1 cup walnuts (optional)
Mix topping ingredients together until crumbly. Add topping 15 to 20 minutes after the bread has been baking, or about half way through baking time.



Zucchini Bread Variations:
  • Use half wheat and half white flour.
  • Use half brown and half white sugar
  • Omit the nuts
  • Add raisins
  • Use half oil and half applesauce (sweet, unsweetened or cinnamon)
  • Add apple pie or pumpkin pie spices
  • Add crumb topping
  • Add cinnamon sugar coating
  • Omit cinnamon and add chocolate chips
  • Add 3 cups of zucchini instead of 2 cups
  • Add wheat germ
  • Add grated carrots

I usually try to grate a few small zucchini and freeze to make bread during the winter months.  You can also cut the zucchini into chunks and freeze to add to soups, stews, and hearty casseroles during months when the snow is piling up and the cold wind howls. 
Brrrrr, I just made myself cold!

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is my first time to visit your blog and I fell in a rabbit hole because the blog is really pleasant to read. Love the recipes best but you have other good content too!

Anonymous said...

Whoah this blog is fantastic! I really like reading your posts and the canning step by step really helps. Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

Whoah this blog is fantastic! I really like reading your posts and the canning step by step really helps. Keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

I never thought to freeze some of the summer zucchini but will from now on. I purchased a couple zucchini from the store to try this recipe but will try again it in the summer when the zucchini are fresh. Thanks for the recipe. Craig

Elizabeth Ohiothoughts said...

Your welcome Craig.

Anonymous said...

Now I can't wait to plant zucchini! I didn't think it could be frozen for winter use, what a great idea. Maria Clark

Elizabeth Ohiothoughts said...

Thanks Maria. It's been in the low 60's for a couple days so I was out cleaning out my veggie garden and planning what I growing. Zucchini is definitely on the list!