Two major life events are rapidly approaching and there's nothing I can do to change their course. So, I've been baking instead.
This first, and most imminent, event is my 32nd birthday (tomorrow) and I'm trying to drum up some excitement over it. Sure, I'm looking forward to a girl's night out to see Eat, Pray, Love followed by stuffing ourselves with pizza margherita's, but the birthday -that number- not so fun!
The second event takes place a week from Monday when Noah will start kindergarten. There's a whole lot of emotions welling up over that big day that I won't even get into!
In an attempt to compose my mixed sentiments over these two events, I've been spending a lot of time in the kitchen. Baking and cooking is clearly therapeutic for me, and 'recipe testing' can sometimes be code for 'working through some stuff'.
One of the many projects on my plate this week was to perfect my zucchini bread recipe. Several pounds of zucchini and eight various loaves later, I narrowed my favorite down to two, one of them featured here today and the other, or 'The Best Zucchini Bread Ever',
will be has been posted Monday on Simple Bites.
Both recipes are actually fantastic; however, I know I have a bevy of chocolate lovers over here, so that may have influenced my decision to feature a chocolate zucchini bread here.
This dark and deadly loaf is "...too good to be healthy" as one of my 'tasters' remarked. But with the inclusion of whole-wheat flour and plenty of zucchini, it's a lot better for you than a slice of cake.
This, in fact, will probably be my birthday cake, it's that great. Double chocolate? It's allll good.
Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread
Adapted from Joy of Baking
- 1/2 c. cake flour
- 1/2 c. whole-wheat flour
- 1/2 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 c. canola oil
- 1 cup organic turbinado sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 c. shredded, raw zucchini
- 3/4 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and place rack in the center of the oven. Grease, or spray with nonstick vegetable spray, a 9x5x3″ loaf pan. Set aside.
Grate the zucchini using a medium sized grater. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the oil, sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract until well blended – about 2 minutes. Fold in the grated zucchini. Add the flour mixture, beating just until combined. Then fold in the chocolate chips.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake until the bread has risen and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 55-65 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes, then remove the bread from the pan and cool completely.
Yields one large loaf.