Friday, August 5, 2016

Chocolate and Peanut Butter Zucchini Cake

We didn't have a garden this year, but Justin was gifted a bunch of zucchini from a coworker.  It just so happens that we'd seen Lidia Bastianich's show "Lidia's Kitchen" a few days before this where she'd made a chocolate zucchini cake.  I was just going to follow her recipe, but when I went looking for it online, it was nowhere to be found.  I assume it was because it was a recent episode and they want you to buy the cookbook.  I found a few other recipes online but they called for ingredients I didn't have so... I decided to come up with my own recipe.

I used to like to say I'm not much of a baker, but I guess our blog would actually prove me wrong.  I've been doing more and more baking and have become fairly adept at it.  Still, it's not like cooking where you can just add random ingredients here and there.  My problem is that I still try to do that with my baking and so it doesn't always come out stellar and I don't always have a recipe to post.  This recipe, however, came out great!  Woohoo!  It's moist, but light.  Somewhere in between cake and brownies.  

Let's listen to The Interrupters "On A Turntable"  -jen

Prep Time:  15 minutes
Cook Time:  50 minutes

Difficulty:  Easy
Makes:  18-24
  • 2 + 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 + 1/2 cups packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), room temp
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 2 large eggs, room temp
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 cups grated unpeeled zucchini (about 1 large or 2 medium)
  • 3/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Butter or spray with nonstick cooking spray a 13 x 9 x 2 inch baking pan. 

In a large mixing bowl whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt.

In another large mixing bowl, using a stand mixer or electric beater, beat sugar, butter and oil until smooth.  Add eggs 1 at a time and vanilla and beat until combined.  Alternately add 1 cup of dry ingredients with half of the almond milk, and repeat until mixed, starting and ending with the dry ingredients.  Mix in grated zucchini and fold in chocolate chips.  Spread batter evenly into prepared baking dish.

In a small dish, microwave peanut butter for about 30 seconds, until smooth and melted.  Spread about 5 thin rows of peanut butter across the top of the batter running them short-wise.  Using a butter knife, drag 4 rows lightly through the peanut butter going long-wise, first in one direction, then the next, to create a pretty design.  (Or just swirl, it doesn't matter!)

Bake at 325 F for about 50 minutes.  Test the center by inserting a clean knife.  If it comes out clean, the cake is done.  Cool on a wire rack.  Slice into 18 large slices or 24 small slices.

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