Have I mentioned yet that I have an inordinate amount of zucchini being produced out of my garden already? I chose to plant an Italian Largo variety this year. . . it produces very large zucchini (around 1.5 – 2 pounds each), with relatively few seeds for the size. I tried it last year when someone gave it to me as a gift from their garden, loved it, and when I chose the seeds for this year’s garden I thought, “Perfect! One squash will make a meal for our family!”
Sounds like good reasoning right?
Except when my first haul from the garden produced four enormous zucchini. The next day, two more. So suddenly I’m looking at roughly twelve pounds of zucchini just staring at me, daring me to think of some way to eat them creatively before we all die of sauteed-and-grilled-zucchini boredom.
I’ve been fiddling around with a few different recipes; dip – like spinach, but . . . zucchini!, zucchini hash served with fried eggs and bacon, baked zucchini (recipe to come) with Italian sausage, but one of my favorite ways? Baked up in bread. It’s my personal mantra that if you have a good banana bread recipe, you also have a good zucchini (or pumpkin) bread recipe. They just substitute well.
In terms of banana bread seriousness, I love my old standby, my mom’s recipe (which I need to focus on making healthier . . . ), but this year I discovered a new favorite. From Molly (of Orangette fame) Wizenberg’s book, A Homemade Life, Glenn’s Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips and Candied Ginger.
It’s frankly kind of unfair to consider it in the same realm as my former banana bread.
The former is a typical banana bread full of spices, ready to be eaten at breakfast slathered with butter and served with a cup of coffee. The latter is more cake than bread, and is perfect any time of the day, but my favorite time is mid-afternoon while the kids nap. I slice a large chunk, sit down for a while and just enjoy it.
But the thing is, I wanted to make it just a smidge healthier (honestly, so that I didn’t feel guilty making it more often!) with sprouted flour and, of course, use zucchini. Oh, and I also wanted to make two loaves . . . this recipe is a special treat around here and the first loaf always goes fast . . . The result? A winner. I hope you try it!
Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread with Chocolate Chunks and Ginger
makes two loaves
- 12 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 4 cups sprouted wheat flour
- 1-1/2 cups organic, pure cane sugar
- 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1-1/2 cups chopped semi-sweet chocolate (or you can use chips)
- 2/3 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
- 4 large eggs
- 3 heaping cups of grated zucchini (I did mine in the food processor – took about fifteen seconds!)
- 1/2 cup whole milk, plain yogurt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease two standard sized bread pans with butter.
In a large bowl, mix together sprouted flour, sugar, salt and baking soda. Whisk well. Add in chocolate and ginger and stir well to coat.
In a medium sized bowl, whisk together eggs, yogurt, zucchini and vanilla extract. Mix in melted butter.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry, stirring until just combined, then divide batter into two prepared loaf pans. Bake for 50-55 minutes until the edges have pulled away from the pan, the top is rounded and a warm brown and a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean of batter.
Cool on a cooling rack in the loaf pan for about five minutes before sweeping around the edges of the loaf pan with a butter knife, remove from pan and continue to cool out of the pan on the rack. Will last about a week, covered and tightly wrapped.