Thursday, July 21, 2011

What to Do With All That !$^&%*%*$ Zucchini

I promise the words “Deceptive” or “Sneaky” will not appear in this post.
Ideally, I believe that vegetables and other wholesome foods should be presented to children simply and in their natural state.  

I'll wait until you're done laughing.

 I have a friend whose child is so averse to vegetables, he picks flecks of green oregano off his pizza.  
Even if you and your family don’t mind eating vegetables al fresco, there comes a time when everyone is mildly (or extremely!) sick of eating the never-ending summer bounty of zucchini.  For the next couple of weeks I’ll be presenting a variety of different zucchini recipes for normal cooks who just want their families to eat healthy food, darn it, and stop whining! 
Maybe that’s just me, though.

A few tips if you’re in the business of disguising zucchini. While the skin is edible (though it should always be washed well first), you will have better luck hiding the featured ingredient if you use a vegetable peeler (I like the OXO Good Grips Swivel Peeler) to peel off all traces of the green skin. The pale green flesh is much less noticeable for recipes in which it is imperative that no trace of any offending green shows through.

Anyway, let's kick this thing off with one of my absolute favorite ways to "hide" zucchini in baked goods: lots and lots of chocolate.

These delicious muffins are such a decadent dessert, no one will know that the star ingredient is the Vegetable-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named.

Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
(adapted from

2 c. flour (could do 1 cup whole wheat, 1 cup white)
1/2 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 c. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 eggs (OR 1 egg plus 1 tbsp water with 2 tsp ground flaxseed -- again, upping the healthy factor)
1/3 c vegetable oil (or a comparable amount of applesauce)
3/4 c. buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla
2 medium zucchini, shredded
1 c. chocolate chips or chunks

1. Preheat Oven to 350.
2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa, sugar, baking powder, and salt
3. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs, oil, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add to dry ingredients and stir until just combined
4. Fold in  zucchini and chocolate chips until evenly distributed

Bake for 25-35 minutes. Makes 1 dozen muffins. Can easily be doubled; these muffins freeze beautifully.

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At July 21, 2011 at 3:04 PM , Blogger lisa g. said...

Yaaaaay for zucchini recipes!!! My mom has been supplying me with LOTS and ours are almost ready for picking. I, too, have one boy who is totally adverse to vegetables (ANY least he will drink V8Fusion if that counts) but if I can put it in a baked good we're golden:) Looking forward to your posts!

At July 21, 2011 at 4:18 PM , Blogger Sarah said...

Our CSA box came today -- TONS more zucchini. I'm going to be making every single recipe I post because I still have some from last week!

At July 26, 2011 at 9:51 PM , Blogger Cami said...

I'm visiting from Wednesday Window :)

My mom used to make that all of the time - at first I didnt' like it, now I love it! Thanks for the happy memory!

<3-Cami from First Day of My Life Life

At July 26, 2011 at 10:47 PM , Blogger aquariann said...

I didn't like zucchini until my Ogre grilled it for me. Yum!!

Btw, I'm hopping by from The Wednesday Window and hope you'll join my Summer Blog Hop, too.

At July 27, 2011 at 10:11 AM , Anonymous Denise @ Creative Kitchen said...

Stopping by from Wednesday Window. Just recently realized how much I love age 40!! :-)

I just shared a sauteed zucchini and Jack cheese recipe on my blog last week. Off to check out your site and follow you on Pinterest, etc. Have a GREAT week!!

Denise @ Creative Kitchen

At July 27, 2011 at 9:24 PM , Blogger Sarah said...

Ooh, Denise, I'm definitely going to check out your zucchini recipe. Anything with cheese has to be good. :)

At August 1, 2011 at 7:56 AM , Blogger Jen said...

My kids are not great veggie eaters, but they love fritattas (we eat them for breakfast, lunch or dinner!) and they gobbled up the last one which was loaded with shredded zucchini - happy as could be. : )

At August 1, 2011 at 8:34 AM , Blogger Sarah said...

Jen -- I've found that shredded zucchini can be hidden in almost anything! the trick is to peel it first -- that way no one notices the green!

At August 1, 2011 at 9:45 AM , Blogger stephchows said...

I've been making zucchini bread like it's going out of style :) Love the chocolate version though!

At August 1, 2011 at 11:12 AM , Blogger peg said...


CSA member here. Any idea how to convert this recipe to non dairy?

At August 1, 2011 at 2:05 PM , Blogger Sarah said...

This recipe could easily be dairy-free. First, subtitute the chocolate chips and cocoa powder with carob chips and carob powder. You can find them at Abundance or Lori's. For the buttermilk, I would either do plain soy yogurt OR just make buttermilk with soy or rice milk. You can make your own buttermilk with either cow's milk OR vegan milks by adding 1 tbsp of vinegar to a cup measure, then filling up the remaining space with whatever milk you choose.
Good Luck!


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