Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Grandma's Zucchini Bread

Okay, so this is not my grandma's zucchini bread.  I frankly have no idea if my grandmother even had a recipe.  If so, it is stuffed somewhere in the very battered copy of the Betty Crocker Cookbook (an original!) that my mother has.  That poor book is now held together by nothing but decades-old spilled vanilla extract and hope.  This is my good friend and fellow food-lover Jennifer's grandmother's recipe.

I'm, admittedly, not that much of a baker.  I finally accepted that it was my cavalier attitude toward measurements that was causing the issue.  I also didn't know until recently that it makes a HUGE difference in how you measure dry ingredients.  One cup of flour scooped out of the bag is an entirely different amount than one cup poured.  I have finally yielded to my own baking failures (and satisfied my healthy case of OCD) by buying a digital scale.  By weighing your measuring cup first, checking the bag/box to see what the measurement of the product equates to in grams, and then getting the scale to that number, you get wildly better results and a LOT less frustration when something doesn't work out.  It takes an extra 30 seconds, but that's better than feeding the dog another batch of cookies.  For you, not the dog.  It also makes you feel like a scientist or something.  Next step, Breaking Bad.  I digress.

Zucchini Bread... You'll never know it has vegetables.

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2 1/4 cups white sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups grated zucchini (roughly one 6-8 inch zucchini)
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

1.  Grease and flour two 8 x 4 inch bread pans. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
2.  Sift flour, salt, baking powder, soda, and cinnamon together in a bowl.
3.  Beat eggs, oil, vanilla, and sugar together in a large bowl. Add sifted ingredients to the creamed mixture, and beat well. Stir in zucchini (which you have peeled and put through a food processor to chop quite finely) and nuts until well combined. Pour batter into prepared pans.
4. Bake for 40 to 60 minutes, or until a tester or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  (When you pull it out to test it, don't slam it on the counter.  This causes the middle to fall, telling you it isn't done, and no, I did not just do this.)  There is a wide range because in part, the timing depends on your oven and the color of your pans.  I always set the timer for 40 and then check it.  

5.  Cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes.  Remove bread from pan, and completely cool.  If you don't have a rack, you can improvise.  I've used a grill on top of a strainer when my rack went missing.  ((WOW, does that sound odd.  I hope your rack never goes missing.))  

If you cut each loaf into 10 slices, it is 260 calories and 12 grams of fat per slice.  This could definitely be reduced by using applesauce to replace the oil.  

Because this makes two loaves, keep one and give one to your grandmother, Jennifer's grandmother, or my dog.  She is missing all the extra snacks.    


  1. Very cool and I'm honored to be mentioned. Grandma Ginnie would be honored and thrilled also. You're so scientific with the scale. Good idea.