Friday, October 24, 2008

Zucchini Bread Recipe

This is one of my most-requested recipes once people try this delicious and amazingly moist Zucchini Bread!

Zucchini Bread

2 1/2 cups sugar (as usual, I use turbinado)
3 cups all-purpose flour (Iuse whole wheat, or a natural white/wheat blend that we get locally)
1 cup oil (I use olive oil)
3 eggs
3 TB vanilla extract
2 cups grated zucchini
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
3 tsp cinnamon
1 cup nuts or chocolate chips (optional)

-Set oven at 350 degrees; Combine all ingredients and pour into greased pans (this makes wonderful muffins, small bread loaves, as well as regular size loaves). Cook till done. Cooking time will vary based on type of pan you used. Begin checking muffins & small loaves between 20 and 30 mins.
-Fun Tip: grate up extra zucchini during the summer, portion out 2 cups worth into a ziploc baggies & freeze, labeling well. This way you can make zucchini bread in the winter time as well!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix

This recipe is one of my standard gifts at Christmas-time. It is wonderfully simple to make, stores seemingly forever (though it never lasts long enough around here to go bad!), and can be tailored to your own tastes.

Hot Cocoa Mix

2 cups nondairy coffee creamer
1 1/2 cups sugar (we use turbinado, and it works perfectly)
3/4 cup cocoa
1/2 cup instant nonfat dry milk powder
1/4 tsp salt

-Combine all ingredients and store in an airtight container. Use 2 TB per serving. Yield is about 36 servings. (We use more than 2 TB per serving, this is per individual taste)
-From Southern Living's 1981 Annual Recipes Book, page 287

We began using organic cocoa powder after reading how many pesticides are used on conventionally grown cocoa beans (a LOT!), and let me tell you .. GO ORGANIC!!! WOW!!! The difference in using organic cocoa vs. non-organic is night and day, and the taste is orgasmic! Now, I know this isn't the greenest of ingredients, but it is a fun way to personalize the cocoa: using flavored powdered creamers. In our last batch I used a Vanilla Caramel creamer. Yummy!