Last summer, my garden was tiny and sparse, thanks to the drought. This summer, my garden is lush, green and waterlogged. I've spent many a day out there, in the rain, harvesting snap peas, green (and purple) beans, kale, Swiss chard, radishes, green onions, pak choi, spinach and more recently, my first summer squash. Monday evening, I harvested my first (ever) crop of potatoes and my first round of tomatoes.
To celebrate (and take advantage of cooler, rainy day temperatures), I decided to have a zucchini bread-baking marathon in my kitchen. My zucchini plants haven't produced anything, yet, but flowers, so I had to buy a few pounds at my local farmers market. I made six loaves of bread, doubling the recipe for King Arthur Baking's Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread for two of the loaves, and used the baking company's Simple Zucchini Bread recipe for the rest.
The double chocolate zucchini bread is a favorite, as its super moist and not too chocolatey, as the name would imply. The double chocolate comes from the use of both cocoa powder and chocolate chips in the recipe. It also is a great way to get picky kids to eat zucchini and also a great way to use up extra zucchini.
DOUBLE CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI BREAD
2 large eggs
1/3 cup honey
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder, optional (adding it makes the chocolate flavor stand out more)
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 2/3 cups flour
2 cups shredded, unpeeled zucchini, gently pressed
1 cup chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350 F; lightly grease an 8 1/2-by-4 1/2 inch loaf pan.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, honey, oil, sugar, and vanilla until smooth.
Add the salt, baking soda, baking powder, espresso powder, cocoa, and flour, mixing until well combined.
Stir in the zucchini and chocolate chips.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake the bread for 65 to 75 minutes, until the loaf tests done (a toothpick or cake tester inserted into the center will come out clean, save for perhaps a light smear of chocolate from the melted chips).
Remove the bread from the oven, and let it cool for 10 to 15 minutes before turning it out of the pan onto a rack.
Cool completely before slicing; store well-wrapped, at room temperature.