The garden’s cornucopia of fresh veggies and herbs has begun – and that makes me one happy camper. I’ve begun searching my favorite recipe sites to ensure I have a diversity of flavors to apply to the bounty.
The Sunburst squash is absolutely delicious simply harvested small, cut into wedges and served with a creamy spicy dressing. However, all the jokes about people leaving summer squash on their neighbors’ doorstep exist for a reason. With the right conditions, summer squash is prolific. My Sunburst and Zapollo (Italian white pattypan) are doing me proud.
So, how does a gardener go about making Zucchini bread?
Six: Sieve through recipes, books, magazines; wander the web. Today’s winner – Zucchini Spice Bread from MarthaStewart.com
I made minor adjustments to her recipe. First, I used smaller pans instead of making one large loaf. In my corn muffin post (also adapted from Martha) I passed along the tip to open the dishwasher, place the pans on the open door and spray there (next wash and the inside of that door is cleaned off); then tip the pans over to let any excess oil drain off while mixing the recipe (tip originally from NordicWare’s site).
Lining the pans with parchment (long side only see photo) is something I’ve been doing with the tea breads. Place the parchment in the oiled pan then lift and turn it over so the batter side has some as well.
Spiced Summer Squash Bread (slight adaptations from Zucchini Spice Bread from MarthaStewart.com)
Oven 350 degrees1 large pattypan summer squash (to yield 1 3/4 cups when grated) 1 cup packed light-brown sugar 2 tablespoons granulated sugar 1/3 cup vegetable oil 1/3 cup melted butter 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 2 large eggs 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves 3/4 teaspoon salt 3/4 cup walnuts broken into large pieces
Ready your pans (3 mini loaves or one regular loaf pan).
The major change I made was that Martha’s folks didn’t drain their zucchini. I grated my squash in moments with my small food processor. You could use any grater with larger holes (no micro-planers – you’d end up with slush). Sprinkle the ¾ tsp salt called for in the recipe into the squash and place it in a double layer of cheesecloth, wring it a bit and leave it in a colander while mixing the rest. Skip this step if you let your squash grow really big as it will be a bit drier – you can tell if you grab some of the grated squash and squeeze – if water come out, then drain it.
Whisk together sugars, oil,butter, vanilla, and eggs.
Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and salt together.
Wring the squash again thoroughly as the salt will have drawn more of the liquid out. I’ll note here, my final loaf was VERY moist although I’d squeezed out at least a cup of liquid from the squash and not added any extra liquid to the recipe. Wondered if her folks also did the squeeze thing but forgot to mention it.
Place the squash in with the flour mixture and use a fork to break up the squash clump and incorporate it throughout the flour mix.
Stir in the egg mixture then the walnuts – just to combine well (never ever over mix tea breads or muffins).
Pour into the prepared pans; lightly sprinkle the tops with sugar if you like.
Bake 25 to 30 minutes for small pans, 45 to 55 minutes for a regular size loaf.
Cool 10 minutes; invert onto a wire rack, then roll over to top side up (with a towel or mitt, it’ll still be pretty warm). Don’t you love how all the recipes say cool completely? Really, does anyone? My personal recommendation is to dive into it while it’s warm – don’t burn yourself, but go at it. This is truly a wonderful loaf with just the right amount of spice.
This post is participating in UnknownMami’s Sundays in My City; the Hearth and Soul Blog Hop, hosted by a bunch of folks including April at The 21st Century Housewife and Alea of Premeditated Leftovers and My Meatless Mondays .