In case you couldn’t tell from the billion degree weather and thousand percent humidity (those are scientific facts) we’ve been having, summer is officially here! Which also means my parents have a bunch of veggies they’re currently harvesting from their garden.
My mom came up briefly for the #FamiliesBelongTogether march last weekend and brought with her some squash and zucchini from their garden that I need to make into a stir fry this week.
(She also brought a bunch of farmers’ market tomatoes so I can make BLTs this week, too. Theirs aren’t quite ready yet, plus they need to save their tomatoes for the beach since we’re fancy people and have Caprese salad as a side most meals that week. My extended family can eat quite an impressive amount of tomatoes!)
The squash got me thinking about a zucchini-dense recipe that’s a favorite in my family: a zucchini chocolate cake. Tastes like a chocolate cake, is about the texture of a brownie, but sneakily has a TON of veggies (and said veggies make this an incredibly—dare I say it?—moist cake). My mom used to work in the kitchen at a camp over the summer when she was in high school, and when she first got this recipe she said it reminded her of how they used to shred up zucchini to hide in tomato sauce so the kids would get some extra veggies on the sly. If this sounds unappetizing to you, I promise you hardly notice the zucchini in this recipe!
I’m more in it for the chocolate cake aspect than the sneakily-hiding-veggies aspect, but hey, if I get some veggies in with my chocolate cake, that’s fine with me!
I’m not going to use the tasty homegrown zucchini for this (why bother when you’re hiding it?), but it’s cheap and plentiful at the grocery store. I haven’t made this cake recently but I’m thinking it’s time to rectify that situation.
Chocolate zucchini cake
1/2 cup softened margarine or butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cups flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 cups shredded zucchini
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Combine the butter/margarine and sugar with a mixer.
Add eggs one at a time, beating well.
Beat in oil and vanilla.
Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon. Gradually add to mixture.
Fold in zucchini, walnuts, and chocolate chips.
Pour into a 9 x 13 inch greased pan and bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.