Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread
August might as well dubbed, “ode to zucchini” month. The Leblond household is sorry to report that, aside from our zucchini haul, this year’s garden has been pitiful at best. Not certain what is to blame: poor soil choice, extreme heat and drought or complete lack of the green thumb genes…sigh... whatever the reason(s) are, we give thanks to the zucchini gods for without it we could not even claim to have a garden.
This recipe is a double batch and great for those parents signed up for co-operative preschools…. who in there right mind willingly signs up for a cooperative preschool?!
Oh, right – we did! *wink*
This recipe is 100 percent kid approved, a healthy alternative to store bought treats/snacks (with less than three Tbsp refined sugar/loaf), and freezes well for up to three months! So, “co-operative” parents, make the double batch, indulge on one loaf and freeze the other to bring to preschool on one of your designated snack days.
3 cups shredded zucchini
1 cup chopped dates
2 cups spelt (or whole wheat) flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp instant espresso powder
1 1/2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/2 cup apple sauce
2 tsp vanilla extract (Never buy vanilla extract again! Learn to make your own from the zero waste chef here.)
1/3 cup white sugar
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F (177 C) and lightly grease two loaf pans. Easy zero waste alternative to greasing pans is simply to use your finger tips.
Shred zucchini and rough chop dates, set aside.
In a large bowl whisk dry ingredients, minus sugar, together: flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, salt, espresso powder and set aside.
In a second bowl whisk together wet ingredients: eggs, canola oil, sugar, apple sauce and vanilla until completely combined.
Slowly add wet ingredients to dry ingredients using a wooden spoon to mix thoroughly. Gently fold in zucchini, dates and chocolate chips.
Distribute batter evenly between the two loaf pans, making sure to scrap every last drop… fingers work well for this task *wink* *wink*
Bake for 45-55 minutes. Check at 40 minutes and every five minutes thereafter – every oven bakes at a different speed so I recommend checking to ensure you do not over cook the loaf.
Let loaves cool for 10-15 minutes before slicing. Enjoy as is or smeared with fresh strawberry jam, butter or my personal favorite all natural crunchy peanut butter. YUM!
Having to use a stock photo is a testament to just how good this recipe is… we were piggishly tucking into our loaves 10 minutes plus one second after they were removed from the oven. I only realized that I forgot to take the “after” photos when sitting down to write this blog….tsk tsk…. or is it oink oink!?
Off to grab another little late night nosh…
Feature Image Courtesy of: Eliza Adam