It’s harvest time in New England!
We’re just past picking green beans and starting to celebrate luscious tomatoes around here. We watch our pumpkins grow by the day, and I love to watch their shape emerge: tall and sophisticated … squat and rotund… and this year, a white pumpkin! Surprise!
Probably the most prolific vegetable in the New England garden is the zucchini – folks around here harvest so much of the stuff, they literally give it away. It’s not uncommon to see a pig-pile of zucchini for the taking on the staff room table at work or roadside with a hand-lettered invitation: FREE.
Zucchini is one of the most flexible, hardworking veggies around, and this time of year, it makes an appearance in so many of our meals. In our house, it’s a salad and stir-fry staple. It shows up on many a vegetable platter because it’s so chop-able, slice-able, and dip-able. Zuchinni roasts up nicely in a grilled veggie pouch or sautees well with it’s pal, summer squash, served with a dusting of freshly shredded parm.
And now – I’m baking with it too! Zucchini, you’re pretty much an all-around, all-star!
This recipe, from my newest and most favorite cookbook, the Vermont Farm Table Cookbook, makes two loaves of moist zuchinni bread – one to enjoy and another to share. We’ve enjoyed our bread for breakfast with coffee and for an afternoon snack with milk. The recipe calls for a cool serving – but we loved it warm, right from the oven.
from Two Black Sheep Farm in Hero, Vermont
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup canola or vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 cups pureed unpeeled zucchini
- 1 cup raisins, chopped walnuts, or chocolate chips (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray two 9×5-inch loaf pans with nonstick cooking spray and lightly dust with flour. Set aside.
- Whisk together the eggs, oils, and vanilla.
- Sift together the flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, sea salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Add the flour mixture to the we ingredients and stir until smooth. Stir in the zucchini and raisins, nuts, or chocolate chips, if using. Pour into the prepared loaf pans and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean, about 1 hour.
- Let the bread cool in the pans for about 15 minutes, then turn the loaves out onto a cooling rack. Let cool completely before serving.