As you may already know, National Zucchini Bread Day is April 23rd. Why should we celebrate this holiday? Because breads that incorporate fruits and vegetables should be recognized! And because its sister, Pumpkin Bread, tends to get more attention. So to spread the love, I bugged my mom for the recipe she made when I was a kid. Turns out it’s actually a recipe for cake, but if you make it in a loaf pan, no one will know the difference!
I started baking shortly after getting married almost 3 years ago. It was my one attempt to becoming more ‘domestic.’ But after giving up sweets for Lent, it’s been awhile since I’ve tested my skills. I am more than a little rusty!
First, in an effort to reduce the fat content, I’d intended to substitute the half cup of oil for half cup of applesauce. However, when I opened the jar, I found mold. Thus, I used the oil.
Then there was the tricky matter of baking time. The recipe provides multiple options regarding pan shape and size. Because I was making ‘bread,’ I chose a loaf pan. Originally, I thought I’d be able to make two loaves, but when I divided the batter into two pans, the second had hardly any. So I poured it all into one.
I baked it at 350 for 40 minutes. Although the cake tester didn’t come out completely clean, I still took the bread out of the oven to cool. I assumed it would continue baking for a short time outside the oven, and I didn’t want to overcook it. But after 15 minutes, I took the bread out of the pan and found it still gooey inside.
So back in the oven it went. I then checked it in 5-minute intervals…for the next 30 minutes. This trip down memory lane went from being fun to being an ordeal. In the end, the bread tasted fine, but it definitely didn’t look as pretty as I would have preferred.
The recipe also includes an orange icing. I chose not to make it because I don’t remember my mom making it, but if you’d like to be adventurous, I’ve included it below.
Whether you try my recipe or find one of your own, make sure to embrace the zucchini and pay it homage by breaking its bread on Tuesday.
In a large bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and cloves; set aside. With a whisk, beat eggs. Stir in oil, sugar, juice, extract and zucchini; mix well. Add to flour mixture, stirring just to moisten. Pour into greased pan(s). Bake at 350 (preheated) as specified or until pick inserted in the center comes out clean. For all cakes except tube cake: Cool in pan on rack. Tube cake: Cool in pan on rack for 15 minutes; then invert on rack to cool thoroughly. Store in airtight container for 4-5 days.
Cake may be baked in:
In a small bowl, beat together until well blended:
Makes about 1 1/2 cups.