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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Home-garden Zucchini Bread

It seems like among the annual staples, peas, green beans, eggplant, spinach, lettuce, chards, tomatoes, chilies, zucchini and various kinds of assorted summer and winter squashes have been the most successful in terms of minimal effort with maximum yield in our home garden.

Raised beds would be nice to have as it gives better control over the soil and growing conditions, and requires very little maintenance once established. Many of my friends here have raised beds and successfully manage perennials like blueberries and raspberries in them as easily as radishes and arugula and garlic.

As it happens we just use native soil in its own condition and battle with the vagaries of nature each year. I think the main reason for this has been just my laziness to get down and build the raised beds. Maybe next year...

We've had huge zucchinis from the garden so far. After the usual zucchini recipes like soups, fritters and curries, there was still plenty to make zucchini breads, many loaves of them.

As I look back at my early recipes, it seems like the photographs were so terrible. I always tell myself I should take a fresh picture when I make that recipe next and update it, but, end up forgetting and moving on to the latest recipe I am excited about sharing. And, at times, I forget to add a little extra item in the photograph to give a perspective - to indicate the size more intuitively. A cropped close-up of a 2-inch chilli is probably not going to tell much about its actual size.

I like these types of breads not-too-sweet, but still moist, almost cake-like. In that sense, this Zucchini Bread is not very different from Banana Blueberry Bread, Apple Walnut Bread and Lemon Fruit Bread shared here before.

Wet ingredients:
2 cups fresh grated Zucchini
1½ cups brown sugar (a little more if preferred)
1 cup canola oil
3 eggs
1 Tbsp vanilla essence
1 Tbsp lemon juice (optional)

Dry ingredients:
3 cups flour (more or less)
1 tsp sat
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup chopped walnuts
½ cup dried cranberries (optional)

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 325°F
  2. Grease two 9x5x2½ inch loaf pans and keep handy
  3. Sift the flout and rest of the dry ingredients together in a large bowl
  4. Combine the wet ingredients in another bow, beat the eggs well
  5. Mix the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients till well incorporated, no lumps
  6. Pour up to about an inch in each of the loaf pans and bake in 325°F oven for about 35-45 minutes
  7. Check mid-way and rotate pans, bake till toothpick inserted comes out clean
  8. Remove from oven, allow to cool a bit, gently dislodge it from the loaf pans, slice and enjoy!

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