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Bread

Cakes, Loaf

Chocolate Zucchini Bread

September 17, 2014

zuchbread

It rained today – which is a sure sign that autumn is right around the corner. I welcomed the refreshing shower, however it’s still incredibly warm out. Last night the fan was pointed right at me but it was still so warm to sleep. I long for cooler fall days where I don’t have to wait until 8 p.m. to go for a run, when even at that hour its still a warm 20 degrees out. I’m sure I’ll eat my words when it’s truly fall and I’m grudgingly turning on the heat in the house. Of course they will be candles, oh yes. I can already smell the ‘fireside s’mores’ candle that’s been sitting on my shelf waiting to fill our house with its delicious scent. 

I will admit, there are lots of dishes I can’t wait to cook and bake in the fall. Of course there is the usual pumpkin fare; cinnamon rolls, doughnuts, streusel muffins, cupcakes, muffinsice cream, swirl brownies (oh yes), bundt cake, and chili. But I also look forward to all the squash, Zucchini in particular, spaghetti squash, soups and chili’s.

BuzzFeed posted about things all basic girls do in the Fall – and I must admit I do quite a few of them – with the exception of the #PSL phenomenon. I don’t drink coffee, but I think that if I did I’m not sure I would indulge in the pumpkin spice latte craze, or at least I hope I wouldn’t. But I am a sucker for fall and all the things it brings with it. I’m sorry to say I’m already thinking about pumpkin patch visits, thanksgiving and even better, friendsgiving 2.0. Last year’s friendsgiving was full of amazing food and friends, a tradition I hope to carry on for years to come.

I’m also happy to have my cousin move into the neighbourhood! –  just across the street. I think about our family living together, her parents and mine, when they were young and I’m excited to have them living close to us, along with the most adorable little boy who I get to see often. I made them this zucchini bread when they moved in as a welcome to the neighbourhood, and a welcome to fall. 

zuch

Chocolate Zucchini Bread
A moist zucchini loaf cake made with greek yogurt.
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  2. 1 1/2 cups sugar
  3. 1/2 cup canola oil
  4. 1 tsp vanilla
  5. 1 tsp baking soda
  6. 1/2 tsp baking powder
  7. 2 eggs
  8. 1/2 cup greek yogurt
  9. 2 1/2 cups flour
  10. 3/4 cups dutch process cocoa + extra for dusting 2 tsps espresso powder
  11. 3 cups shredded zucchini
  12. 1/2 cup chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Line and grease a loaf baking pan with parchment paper.
  3. Beat the butter, sugar, baking soda, baking powder together until creamy. Mix in the canola oil and vanilla until smooth. Add the eggs and beat until smooth. Stir in the yogurt, alternating with the flour.
  4. Mix in the cocoa and beat until smooth. Fold the zucchini and chocolate chips into the batter. Pour the batter into your baking pan, sprinkle with chocolate chips and bake the cake for 30 to 35 minutes.
Adapted from Use Real Butter
Adapted from Use Real Butter
b a k e a h o l i c http://www.bakeaholic.ca/
Bread, Loaf

Teacher, Teacher give me the news…

April 22, 2013

So I guess this is real life now.

A friend of mine from school was just hired THIS morning to a school district! We just finished classes on Friday! How crazy. I know I’m finished, and I have my teaching certificate but I still can’t believe that I can now apply for positions and TOC jobs. I still have to get my resume together and updated, and fill out a ton of forms and do paperwork but it’s feeling more surreal now.

I still have to take a couple courses this summer for my second degree, aBachelor of Education, but I could still be a TOC until the end of June since I’m only taking classes two days a week. Eek! No longer a student, I am now the Teacher!

Thankfully I have two weeks off before classes begin again, and there is a lot happening in those two weeks (aside from paperwork). This weekend is packed! Friday night we’re celebrating my Nonna’s 75th birthday with a great big italian dinner and dancing at a restaurant in Vancouver. Saturday I’m super excited to be making ‘Gender Reveal’ cupcakes for a baby shower, and Sunday is our House Warming with both our families. This week will be full of organizing, some painting, getting the house in tip top shape to show it off!

And on top of that, I have also decided to play baseball again this year! A friend of mine from school needed more girls for a Senior B Rep team, and asked if I wanted to join. I haven’t played in a couple years but I got pulled in! So there’s a practice and a game this week, and weekend which I might have to miss due to all our events! But I love being busy, and being home for two weeks after teaching full time in a practicum and classes would make me stir crazy.

We celebrated all day and night Friday after our last class of PDP, and then Saturday morning I woke up and had to drop off a few dozen cookies, banana bread and cupcakes to my elementary school’s bake sale to raise money for a new playground.

Caramelizing the bananas before adding them adds a rich deep flavour compared to regular banana bread. Great for school, bake sale’s or an afternoon snack.

Even better with a smear of Trader Joe’s Cocoa Almond Spread (Like Nutella, slightly healthier…sorta.)

Caramelized Banana Bread

Other Banana Bread Recipes Here and Here

  • 2-3 well ripened bananas
  • 1 1/3 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/3 cup butter melted
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • crushed Walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°. Spray loaf pan with cooking spray.

  1. Whisk together thoroughly the flour, baking soda, and baking powder in bowl.
  2. In small pot on medium heat, add the butter, sugar and bananas. Mash with fork. Heat until sugar and banana are caramelized – about 5-8 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.
  3. Gradually beat in eggs one at a time.
  4. Fold in the banana mixture to the flour mixture, add walnuts (optional)
  5. Spread evenly in pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 50-60 minutes.
  6. Let cool in the pan on a rack for 5-10 minutes before un-molding to cool completely on the rack.

Loaf

In for the long haul

January 13, 2013

Last week was the first week back to classes since the break. I have to admit it was a little rough getting out of bed to the sound of an alarm instead of the sweet sound of “I can get up whenever I want to,” especially on those days when Adam had to get up for work and I knew I could lay in bed much longer. Now the time difference between getting up in the morning is a mere hour. I only get one whole hour longer than Adam in the morning (yes – boohoo for me.) It especially sucks on the days when Adam wakes me up when he gets up and I can’t fall back to sleep. Once I’m up, i’m usually up – unless I am realllyyyy tired.

Since moving in it has been really nice that we have more than one bathroom. Our old condo had a ‘cheater’ bathroom so it was connected to the bedroom, and it was our only bathroom. The kitchen was also right there… so the buffer zone of sounds wasn’t quite as far as I would like when it came to Adam getting ready in the morning and banging around in the kitchen – i.e. grinding his coffee beans. But now – Oh the joys of living in a house with stairs again! This means that Adam’s morning routine is a whole floor or two below me, and he uses the other bathrooms instead of having to wake me up =) I call that a win-win situation.

On another note, I was lucky enough to go to the Lady GaGa concert in box seats with a friend from school. That lady is one crazy performer – lots of crazy outfits and she can seriously sing and play musical instruments. Overall it was an awesome performance.

And now we’re back to school again. This week I start my long practicum. Four months! From the middle of January to the middle of April I will be fully immersed in Grade 2. As excited as I am to begin, I am not so excited to lose my glorious mornings of sleeping in. Especially since it’s getting quite cold outside, the mornings can be pretty frosty. I like to wake up when the sun is beaming outside, not when it is still hidden beneath the layer of darkness enveloping our house. Since I was off for a week longer than Adam, he had to return to work on the 2nd, I thought I had better bake him something to nibble on in the dark morning hours, or on the way to work, or while he was at work. We also had a very sad looking bunch of overripe bananas laying out on the counter that were just crying out to be baked into a loaf. So, here it is.

It’s my usual banana bread recipe, but this time I subbed butter for vegetable oil, and added some sour cream for good measure. I also cut down the sugar, which you don’t even notice. Since the bananas were so ripe they are already pretty sweet. But, if your bananas aren’t overly ripe you probably won’t miss the extra sugar either.

May I also suggest if you’re having this for breakfast, or perhaps a snack, it is glorious with a little almond butter smeared on top.

Banana Bread

  • 3 well ripened bananas, cut in half
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tbs. sour cream
  • dash of cinnamon
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Spray loaf pan with cooking spray.
  2. Whisk together thoroughly the flour, baking soda, and baking powder in bowl.
  3. In bowl, using a hand mixer (or stand) beat sugar, butter, banana and sour cream. Add in eggs one at a time.
  4. Spread evenly in pan. sprinkle top with more pumpkin seeds. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 50-60 minutes.
  5. Once finished, turn oven off and leave door open half way. Leave loaf in oven for another 10-20 mins to ensure centre is baked through.