What better way to wrap up the last full month of summer than with a recipe that uses up that certain produce everyone who owns a garden is trying to foist onto everyone else right now. Zucchini! Love it or hate it, it is quite abundant this time of year. And even if you don’t like this green veggie, hiding it in a chocolate quick bread is obviously the best thing to do with it. It will certainly make you reconsider your non-zucchini eating stance. And, as usual, we’ve got you covered with a gluten-free variation and a whole wheat/natural sugar variation.
I love using up fresh veggies or fruit in baking. But this can be tricky sometimes, with all the moisture they release as they bake. That is why I prefer having them in small pieces, or better yet, shredded. This way the zucchini (or whatever you are using) can evenly distribute in the batter and release a uniform moisture, making it easier to gage how much dry ingredients you will need.
Now a quick bread is very straightforward, which makes it great is you are new to making bread. No yeast and proofing, just stir and bake. Whenever I am developing a new recipe, I always take notes on tips I learn as I am testing it out so I can share them on the blog and hopefully give you a foolproof recipe. For this one, there were two things I made sure I did. First, grease AND flour the pans:
Next was sifting the cocoa. I’ve never met a cocoa powder that didn’t have little clumps. Those tiny bits that become powder bombs in your finished product and ruin a bite. So I always sift my cocoa powder. Also, I love using a combo of black or dark cocoa with regular. It hits all the chocolate flavor notes. If you don’t have access to black/dark cocoa, just substitute with regular. The flavor will not be as fudgy though, and the color of the bread significantly lighter.
When it comes to actually mixing the bread, the Ankarsrum does the work for you. First we have the wet:
And then the dry:
For the chocolate chips, I tested out with milk, semi-sweet and even bittersweet. They all worked just fine and what you use is really just up to your preference. I liked the milk chocolate playing off the dark intensity of the black cocoa powder, while my husband was all about the bittersweet and extra dark chocolate taste.
Once these have baked, make sure to let the loaves cool in the pans for 10 minutes. All that moisture and steam from the zucchini means that the bread needs to cool down and set a little, otherwise it can fall apart if you try to turn it out of the pan right away.
Before you dive into this luscious chocolatey bread, let it continue to cool a bit more once out of the pans. This will make it easier to slice.
Let us know if you have any questions or comments. Happy baking!
Chocolate Zucchini Bread
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Bake Time: 45 minutes
300 g. ( 2 1/2 cups) all purpose flour
228 g. (1 cup) sugar
4 g. (1 tsp.) baking soda
6 g. (1 1/2 tsp.) baking powder
4 g. (1 tsp.) kosher salt
22 g. (1/4 cup) black/dark cocoa powder, sifted
11 g. (2 Tbsp.) regular cocoa powder, sifted
1.5 g. (2 tsp.) espresso powder
230 g. (2 cups shredded) zucchini, approximately 1 large zucchini
2 large eggs
224 g. (1 cup) buttermilk
168 g. (3/4 cup) whole milk plain Greek yogurt or sour cream
5 g. (1 tsp.) vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
170 g. (1 cup) chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350º F. Grease and flour 2 medium size loaf pans. Set aside until ready to use.
In a medium size mixing bowl, whisk together the first 8 ingredients (flour through espresso powder.)
Set up the Ankarsrum mixer base with the slicer/shredder attachment and the regular size grating drum. Place a bowl underneath to catch grated zucchini. Turn speed on the highest setting and use the plunger to push the zucchini through. Alternately, use a box grater or hand grater to grate zucchini.
Set up the Ankarsrum mixer with the plastic whipping bowl and the single wire whisks. Add the eggs, buttermilk, yogurt and vanilla and whisk on low speed (1 o’clock) until combined. Add the zucchini and mix in.
Reduce speed to the lowest setting (12 o’clock) and add the dry ingredients. Mix just until combined. Mix in the chocolate chips.
Divide batter evenly between the two prepared pans. Bake for 45 minutes, or until top is set and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Let cool in pans for 10 minutes. Run a table knife around the edges of the bread and then gently turn out onto a cooling rack to finish cooling before slicing into.
Yield: 2 loaves
WHOLE WHEAT VERSION
-Replace all purpose flour with 283 g. ( 2 1/2 cups) whole wheat flour. If milling at home, soft wheat is ideal.
-If desired, replace sugar with 172 g. (1 cup) Sucanat with honey, aka honey granules.
-Follow recipe above.
-For mini loaves, bake approximately 20 minutes. Yield: 12 mini loaves. For muffins: bake approximately 15 minutes. Yield: 15.
GLUTEN FREE VERSION
-Replace all purpose flour with equal parts of a measure-for-measure/cup-for-cup gluten free flour.
-Increase salt to 5 g. (1 1/4 tsp.).
-Follow instructions above, making sure to use gluten-free flour for greasing/flouring pans.