Chocolate Zucchini Bread

It’s that time of year again. If you garden, or know someone who does, there is bound to be an abundance of zucchini in your life. I like zucchini many ways, but baked into bread has to be one of my favorites. Add some chocolate to that and we have a sure winner on our hands! I sent my most recent loaf to my husband’s office, saving just one piece each for the kids. All three of them finished their few bites and begged for more. Next time, maybe I need to make two loaves. (Please excuse the fuzzy photo. Our camera is not working and I’m trying to make do my phone.)

chocolate_zucchini_breadChocolate Zucchini Bread

½ c coconut flour (57 g)
½ c arrowroot starch (57 g)
6 T cocoa powder (30 g)
1 t baking soda
½ t salt
8 large eggs
½ c coconut oil, melted
1/3 c honey (114 g)
1 T apple cider vinegar
1 c shredded zucchini (170 g)

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Generously grease a 9×5 loaf pan, or line with parchment
  3. Whisk together coconut flour, arrowroot starch, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl
  4. In a separate bowl, beat eggs until frothy and uniform in color
  5. Stir in oil, honey, and vinegar
  6. Beat egg mixture into flour mixture until smooth
  7. Add zucchini and mix until thoroughly combined
  8. Pour batter into prepared pan
  9. Bake for 50-55 min until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean

Yield 1 loaf of bread

NOTES

  • Arrowroot starch may also be called “arrowroot flour”
  • The batter combines more smoothly if eggs are room temperature. Chilled eggs may harden the coconut oil, which yields a slightly heavier loaf with a coarser top.
  • For best results, allow bread to cool completely before slicing.

What is your favorite way to cook zucchini?

Fig Bars

Paging through the calendar of unusual holidays at brownielocks.com, I discovered today (January 16th) is Fig Newton Day. To celebrate, I offer you my take on the classic cookie. I was inspired by Elana Amsterdam’s recipe, but she made hers with almond flour and I wanted mine without nuts. I also wanted a smaller bar, so I could eat more of them! During my testing process, the kids gobbled theirs up with big grins and pronounced them “really good.” My husband, who still indulges his sweet tooth occasionally in grain- and dairy-filled goodies, said they taste just like the real thing.

Fig Barsfig bars

½ c dried figs, about 10 figs (75 g)
3 T water
1 T lemon juice
1 t vanilla extract, divided
½ c coconut flour (57 g)
½ t baking soda
¼ t salt
3 large eggs
2 T coconut oil, melted
1½ T honey (32 g)

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F line a large baking sheet with parchment
  2. Place figs in a small container, cover with water, lemon juice and ½ t vanilla, and set aside
  3. Whisk together coconut flour, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl
  4. In a separate bowl, beat eggs until frothy and uniform in color
  5. Beat oil, honey, and remaining ½ t vanilla into eggs
  6. Add egg mixture to flour mixture and stir until a soft dough forms
  7. Puree figs and liquid into a paste
  8. Divide dough into 3 equal pieces (about 90 g ea)
  9. For each portion, form a thin log and roll out between pieces of parchment into a 12×3 rectangle
  10. Spoon 2 T fig paste onto dough and smooth into an even layer along the center of the rectangle
  11. Use parchment to fold long sides of dough over fig paste and transfer bar to prepared pan
  12. Bake bars for 10-11 min until golden and firm
  13. Allow to cool 2-3 min on pan
  14. Cut each log into 8 1½-in bars before removing to wire rack

Yield 24 bars

What is your experience trying to recreate store-bought treats in your own kitchen?

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Apple Cinnamon (Coffee) Cake

I wanted something sweet for breakfast the other morning, and the kids (crazy little people) told me they were tired of banana bread. Given the abundance of apples in our house this year, I thought apple cake might just hit the spot. Given that all three of my kids asked for a second piece, I’d call it a big hit!

apple-cinnamon-cakeApple Cinnamon (Coffee) Cake

2 c peeled, diced apples (250 g)
1 T cinnamon
½ c apple juice
¾ c coconut flour (85 g)
1 t baking soda
½ t salt
8 large eggs
½ c coconut oil, melted
1 T apple cider vinegar
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Grease and line 8-in round pan
  3. Combine apples, cinnamon, and juice in large flat-bottomed pan
  4. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally until apples are softened and liquid is syrupy
  5. Whisk together coconut flour, baking soda, and salt
  6. In a separate bowl, beat eggs until frothy and uniform in color
  7. Stir coconut oil and vinegar into eggs until well combined
  8. Add flour mixture to egg mixture and stir until smooth
  9. Mix in apples, including syrup, until evenly distributed throughout
  10. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 40-45 min, until fully set in the center
  11. Allow to cool in pan 5-10 min before removing and slicing

Yield: 1 8-in cake

To make this a more dessert-y dish, I recommend adding a dollop of coconut whipped “cream” and/or drizzling with your favorite caramel sauce.

Do you prefer your cakes for breakfast or dessert?

Chia Pudding

Once upon a time, my very favorite pudding was tapioca. I could finish an entire tub in one sitting. Recently, I’ve learned that even a little tapioca can cause me digestive trouble, so the amount in even one reasonable serving of pudding is enough to really bother me (not to mention what the excess sugar and dairy milk would do to my system). Although chia seed pudding is not new to me, I recently found a classic recipe from Elana Amsterdam using chia as a substitute for tapioca. I knew I had to try out this idea for myself.

chia_puddingChia Pudding

1 13.5-oz can coconut milk, blended smooth
3 T chia seeds (32 g)
2 t honey
2 t vanilla extract
⅛ t salt

  1. Stir together
  2. Refrigerate for 24 hours, shaking or stirring every few hours to redistribute seeds evenly
Yield 2 c pudding
What have you made (or wanted to make) with ch-ch-ch-chia seeds?

Banana Crepes

I created this dish one morning at the end of the pay period when we were out of a number of staples. I didn’t have any flours or milks on hand, so pancakes and custard were out. I wasn’t in the mood for another breakfast of plain eggs, and I probably wouldn’t have been able to convince the children to eat them anyway. Instead I mixed up a little of this and that and discovered this surprisingly versatile little recipe.

banana-crepesBanana Crepes

5 large eggs
1 c mashed banana (227 g)
⅓ c coconut oil
½ t salt

  1. Puree together all ingredients until smooth
  2. Spoon 2 T batter onto ungreased griddle over med-low heat and spread out to a 6-in circle
  3. Cook until edges are well browned (about 1½ min)
  4. Flip carefully, spreading crepe flat if it crumples
  5. Cook an additional 30-60 sec

Yield: 18 crepes

Note: An experienced crepe maker could probably make 6-7 10-in crepes with this recipe, but I can’t get them to flip without tearing. If you are successful in making the larger size, I’d love to hear about it in the comments!