I love this recipe for zucchini bread. When my children were young, we lived in one of those neighborhoods where there were lots of children, fenceless backyards, car pools, and lots of sharing of recipes. This was one of those recipes. Lucy, our perky neighborhood teen babysitter, used to ride her bike down Sneed Road to our house; believe me, my children were as happy to see her as I was. One day, she brought a loaf of her mother, Ellen’s, zucchini bread. It was unusually moist and dotted with colorful green flecks from the zucchini peel.
The flecks give the bread texture and color that make it visually appealing.
The only change I made to Ellen’s recipe was to add more zucchini, nuts, and chocolate chips. One of my sons will not eat zucchini but loved this bread.
What to do with a baseball bat-sized zucchini?
Like for many of us, I often make zucchini bread when I find one of those baseball bat-sized zucchinis in the garden. If you do that, too, be sure to remove the large seeds before grating the flesh by quartering the zucchini into long strips and cutting out the triangular-shaped seed section. For large amounts of grating, I use the shredder blade in the food processor. Put the grated zucchini in a colander until ready to use. They will start to sweat, and you want that liquid to drain away.
Have no idea how I missed this! 7 pounds 6 ounces
Yield: 2 loaves or 1 loaf and 2 mini-loaves
1 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups granulated sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 pound unpeeled zucchini (a tad over 3 cups when grated)
1 cup walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped
⅔ cup chocolate chips (optional — ⅓ cup per loaf)
Mise en Place:
Preheat oven to 325º if glass pans, 350º for metal pans. Grease loaf pans.
Coarsely grate the unpeeled zucchini and set aside. If liquid forms at the bottom of the container while it rests, discard it.
Beat eggs in a mixing bowl for 30 seconds on medium speed.
Add the oil, sugar, and vanilla and mix for two more minutes on medium-low speed. Beating these ingredients together at this point in the recipe is one of the things that gives fruit bread “lift” by incorporating air into the batter.
Add the dry ingredients: the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon. Remember, when measuring flour, spoon it into a measuring cup and level with a knife as opposed to packing the flour into the measuring cup by dipping it into a package of flour. You can read more about measuring ingredients in my home ec post.
Mix on slow speed for 30 seconds. Mix gently, you don’t want to stimulate the gluten in the flour to become tough and elasticky.
Add the nuts and zucchini and mix on slow speed until just mixed, about 30 seconds max.
If you plan to add chocolate chips, stir them in now.
Pour batter into prepared pans.
Cook for about an hour, or until a knife inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool in pan for about 15 minutes and then remove from pan and allow to continue cooling on a wire rack. I usually need to use a knife to loosen the bread from the edges of the pan before turning it over to release it.
My friend, Patty, describes how she made the recipe gluten free in the Comments section. Patty also substituted 3/4 cup of honey for each cup of sugar. This makes for a darker bread that is delicious, but needs to be called Honey Zucchini Bread because the final flavor left in your mouth is honey instead of zucchini.
I never thought of adding chocolate chips to this recipe until I started making my cousin’s recipe for pumpkin bread: Marion’s Crazy Good Pumpkin Bread with Chocolate Chips. I thought her recipe was great with chocolate chips, and since zucchini and pumpkin are in the same family, I thought, “Why not?” It was delicious! Surprisingly, not too sweet.
© 2016 Judy Wright. All rights reserved. No photos or text may be used without written consent.