Sunday, August 9, 2009

Back in the Saddle

I have been cooking lately, I assure you. I have just been making things that I have blogged about before. For example, last weekend I made Spaghetti Salad. Twice actually. I have already blogged about that. I also have made brownies recently (all of which I have blogged about). It's not really inspiring to write about nor read about things that I have already posted. So, here I am. I made a new recipe yesterday. Amazing!

I have a few zucchini from my garden. Stop. I must talk about this for a moment. Our weather this year has been bizarre to say the least. As a result, my garden stinks. Actually, it sucks. I got three zucchini from my three plants and a few tomatoes so far. That is it. I did get some peas and beans earlier in the season but they were so few to comment about. And about a dozen strawberries. Next year, I plan to do some things differently in my garden. I am only going to plant things I love. I will try peppers and cucumbers again, but I am going to move them to where they might do better.

Okay back to my thought. I had some zucchini to use, so I grated two of them into 2-cup portions and froze them. The third I used to make zucchini bread. My husband adores zucchini bread. However, he begged me to make his mom's recipe. While I love his mom's recipe, I have already posted about it. So, alas, I used another one that I have. It's from Martha Stewart. Sssssh, don't tell Jason. He thinks I made his mom's. The fact that he can't tell the difference is funny to me.

I love my Kitchenaid silicone bakeware. I have a loaf pan and it's always fun to pop your loaf out when it's done baking. The edges have gotten some use (you can see in the picture below). One day I will get more bakeware. Maybe for Christmas. Hint hint!

This zucchini bread is very easy and tasty. It could be modified to be more Weight Watchers friendly, but that isn't something I am worried about these days. More on that later. It has ingredients that you would have on hand in your pantry. The blend of spices really adds to the bread. Using grated zucchini with the skin on gives the bread a ton of moisture too.

So, no Weight Watchers for me. I had to actually discontinue my membership back in May. Why you ask? I am pregnant. They usually kick pregnant people out of Weight Watchers. This isn't to say that you can't still watch what you are eating while pregnant. I am certainly doing this. So far, I haven't gained any weight because I am a little "fluffy" to begin with. Yes, I probably should have lost another 20 pounds before getting pregnant, but whatever.

Back to food. This bread is delicious. With the addition of vegetables, it makes it slightly more healthy than eating a piece of chocolate cake with Crisco frosting. It also is much more rich because of brown sugar instead of all white. I also substituted canola oil for the vegetable oil. I do this in all my recipes since it's healthier than most other oils.

So, enjoy a piece (a small one) after dinner. Or with a cup of tea for breakfast. I did.

Zucchini Spice Bread
from: Martha Stewart's Every Day Food Magazine

1 3/4 cup grated zucchini, skins on
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2/3 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
3/4 teaspoons nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/8 teaspoon cloves
3/4 teaspoon salt

1. In a large bowl, combine sugars, oil, vanilla and eggs. Mix well. In a small bowl, combine flour, soda, powder and spices. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture. Fold in zucchini.

2. Pour into a 9x5x3-inch pan and bake for 45-55 minutes at 350 degrees.