First of all, thanks to everyone for all the baby love! I’m still digesting the fact that I’m going to be mom to 3 boys, but I think that everything happens for a reason. It’s funny, the old woman that we bought this house from had 3 boys, so it’s kind of like continuing the legacy. Poor little Max had his heart set on a baby sister, but he’s already starting to come around. Wyatt seems excited, too, but I think the jury will still be out until we have actual baby-in-hand.
So I was doing some hormonal baking the other day. I say hormonal because basically, if it had chocolate in it, I was going to make it. I think chocolate covered hot dogs would’ve sounded good at the time. Anyway, whenever I need to make something for dinner, etc. and I have a particular ingredient that I would like to use (or if I’m just looking for ideas in general), one of my favorite sites to go to is allrecipes.com. I like this site because you can search by ingredient, and, like other similar websites, all of the recipes are rated by people who’ve already tried them. I also like it when reviewers share what they changed about the recipes, or recommendations for what they would do differently if they made it again.
So I went on the other day in search of something for dinner, an on the home page was a recipe for chocolate zucchini bread. Now, I like my veggies & all, but normally this would not make me take pause. I guess the promise of a double dose of chocolate and the five star rating from 277 reviewers is what made my hormonal ass stop in its tracks. Could it really be that good?
Max has always been a good veggie eater. He definitely has his dislikes, but I’m happy with what he’ll put in his mouth. Wyatt, on the other hand, will either flat out refuse it, or he’ll secretly hide his veggies next to him in the booster seat so that by the time we realize what he’s been up to, he’s already free. He basically likes tomatoes and cucumbers. That’s it. I’ve resorted to cooking a pot of veggies & pureeing them in spaghetti sauce just to sneak them in. (Side note: of course, Wyatt likes red sauce, and Max does not, so this trick only works for half of the little people in this house). I know a lot of parents aren’t big fans of getting sneaky about it, but I’ve tried the “just putting it in front of them repeatedly” trick, & I still do, but so far it hasn’t worked.
Wyatt also likes soup (Max does not- BIG SURPRISE!) so the other week I tried this really yummy, fast & easy zucchini soup recipe hoping he would be all over it. He wasn’t. The grown ups ate it, but I did have a good amount of zucchini left over (gotta love Produce Junction) so this bread was worth a shot. Let me tell you–decadent is not the word. If you are having a chocolate attack, this bread is for you. I made it for the kids, but I think Bill & I ended up eating most of it. And the zucchini? No sign of it– you would never know it was in there.
Because of the state of my hormones, and a previous bout of extremely dry muffins, I took one reviewer’s advice and added a cup of lite sour cream to the recipe, along with 3 extra tablespoons of cocoa to the dry mix. I also increased the chocolate chips to one cup, and sprinkled some on top as well. Finally, since fat content was so obviously an issue (chocolate chips are fat-free, did you know that? REALLY!), I replaced half of the oil with applesauce.
I also learned that if you throw your chocolate chips into the dry mix (instead of at the very end, like most recipes), it prevents them from all sinking to the bottom. It worked!
So, without further ado, I give you….
- 2 (1 ounce) squares unsweetened chocolate
- 3 eggs
- 2 cups white sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 2 cups grated zucchini
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease two 9×5 inch loaf pans. In a microwave-safe bowl, microwave chocolate until melted. Stir occasionally until chocolate is smooth.
- In a large bowl, combine eggs, sugar, oil, grated zucchini, vanilla and chocolate; beat well. Stir in the flour baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Fold in the chocolate chips. Pour batter into prepared loaf pans.
- Bake in preheated oven for 60 to 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a loaf comes out clean.