My mom recently compiled all her recipes in a book and gave a copy to each of her children. She called it "Linda's Healthy Recipes" and to me it is a priceless treasure. It contains the instructions for pretty much everything she fed me as a child... talk about memories! My mom cooked everything from scratch and we always had meals together around the dining room table. She used whole foods and she tried to make things as healthy as possible, which for her meant whole grains and going easy on meat, refined sugar, fat, and dairy. Her repertoire of dishes quite literally became a part of who I am today, so to have them all written down in one place is incredibly meaningful to me. Thanks, Mom!
So, at this "I came home from church with a bagful of giant zucchini" time of year, I thought of my mom's recipe for chocolate zucchini cake. To tell you the truth, it wasn't my most favorite cake recipe when I was a kid-- I always thought it was a little dry. But I liked the chocolate chips on top and it was nostalgic, so I got out the recipe and looked at it. I discovered that she had modified the original recipe shared with her by cutting the fat in half in the interest of her family's health. Ah. That would explain the dryness.
Dear mother, I must confess that we have been making the full-fat version of this cake and loving every last crumb of it. I have been using coconut oil though, which my research says is very good for you. So I haven't been feeling at all guilty about doubling the fat. I do feel guilty about the amount of chocolate chips I have been putting on top, which is also probably double what my mother uses. But only just a little guilty.
I thought I would share the recipe on my blog today. First I will back up a little and show you what's behind the scenes in the cake picture-- one of my favorite cooking helpers:
Chocolate Zucchini Cake
1 C coconut oil (original recipe calls for 1/2 C butter and 1/2 C oil, so feel free to be flexible with the fat)
1 3/4 C sugar or 1 C honey
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 C flour (I betcha my mother used whole wheat, or at least half white/half wheat)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp soda
4 Tbsp cocoa powder
1/2 C sour milk (add 1 T vinegar or lemon juice to fresh milk, I bet buttermilk would be good too)
2 C peeled, shredded zucchini (I always forget to peel it, no biggie)
1 C or more chocolate chips (those are her words, I definitely go with the "more")
Cream together oil and sugar. Add vanilla, Add eggs and beat. Sift together the dry ingredients and stir in, together with the sour milk. Stir in the shredded zucchini. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan, sprinkle with chocolate chips. Bake at 325 for 45-50 minutes. No need to frost this cake.
Enjoy zucchini season, everyone!