Baby Maya slept for almost 8 hours straight this past night (from 10 pm - 6 am), and is napping beside me again. Being a little more rested myself this has given me the impetus to rush around a bit today, working on this blog, cooking zucchini soup, harvesting basil to make pesto, drying calendula & hot cayenne peppers, hanging laundry outside, and supporting Greg on the strawbale construction, all at the same time!
Speaking of recipes that use up profuse amounts of vegetables, here is a zucchini cake recipe from my mom that is so moist and chocolatey that it can easily replace any other version of a chocolate cake fit for a birthday celebration. No one will ever guess zucchini is the secret ingredient! We made it just after Maya's birth, as zucchini was in abundance in our garden at that time. It may well become her traditional birthday cake for each end of July. Today (mid September) we still have zucchini in hoards, popping up unexpectedly every other day when I happen to move one of the zucchini leaves aside to discover it. I decided to make up the zucchini cake again, as well as zucchini chowder, zucchini bread, marinated zucchini, zucchini & fresh egg pizza, and more shredded zucchini to put away in the freezer! We'll be grateful for it in February.
Here's the zucchini cake recipe for all you chocolate lovers who want to get some of othe benefits of vegetables and "eat your cake too":
Maya's Birth-Day Zucchini Chocolate Cake
1/2 cup margarine
1/2 cup sunflower oil
1 3/4 cups white sugar
2 cups grated zucchini (add this at the very end)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup milk
Mix all above ingredients except zucchini in large bowl. In separate bowl mix:
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
5 Tbsp cocoa
1 Tbsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon, optional
Add 2nd bowl to first and beat. Then add zucchini.
Put into greased 9x13 glass baking dish.
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
1/2 cup nuts, optional
Bake at 325F for 45-60 minutes, until knife inserted comes out clean. Serve warm or cold.