Zucchini Bread & Muffins

This is a recipe we’ve had around for years.  Looking back through my cookbook (a book I made  years ago and which charmingly tracks my developing ability to cook from age 15 onward, complete with recipes such as “eggs stuck to toast” and detailed instructions on how to make and use natural indigo dye, which is, of course, not food at all) I’d say I copied this one down in the summer of 2008 when we were working on a farm in Vermont.  I don’t remember what I based the recipe on, but the slightly idiosyncratic increments make me think it has been fiddled with.

The great thing about zucchini bread is this: it is always delicious and you can freeze grated zucchini in the summer when there are those big baseball bat sized zucchinis and then enjoy fresh zucchini bread of muffins all winter long.  Last summer I froze eight packets of grated zucchini, all in 2 cup increments to make the baking easier.  A brief digression about freezing zucchini: it’s really easy, just grate it up into a strainer, save the extra liquid for stock, and pack it into freezer bags.  press out the extra air and lay the bags in the freezer.  If you smooth them out and lay them flat they will become very easy to stack and move around.  However, I did note that two cups of fresh zucchini seem to come down to about 1 cup frozen.  So, if you’re making this recipe with frozen zucchini, make sure you do get two whole cups.

Now, the recipe:

This makes approximately 2 loaves

3 eggs

2 cups grated zucchini

2 1/8 cup sugar

3/4 cup melted butter.  Note: if using unsalted butter, also add 1 teaspoon salt.

1/4 cup neutral oil

3 teaspoons vanilla

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

smattering of nutmeg (optional)

1 cup slightly crushed wallnuts (optional of course)

1 cup chocolate chips

  1. Preheat the oven to 350
  2. Beat the eggs until foamy, then add the sugar, butter, oil, zucchini, and vanilla
  3. Add baking soda, baking powder, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Again, if using unsalted butter, add a teaspoon of salt here.  Mix well.
  4. Add nuts and chips and again stir until evenly mixed.
  5. Pour the batter into a lightly greased loaf pan or into a lightly greased muffin pan.  Fill to just below the top since they do rise somewhat.
  6. Bake loaves for 40-50 minutes.  Bake muffins for 15-20 minutes, depending on size. 15 on the nose seems to be perfect for mini muffins.

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