From the SCCC Kitchen: Cake marries unusual partners: chocolate, zucchini

The chocolate and peanut butter partnership has lasted long enough. SCCC culinary educational aide L

“From the SCCC Kitchen” offers tastes from Schenectady County Community College’s culinary arts program. Today, educational aide Lois Keefrider offers the second of three late summer recipes using fresh, seasonal vegetables. Bakers will appreciate the Chocolate Zucchini cake.

The chocolate and peanut butter partnership has lasted long enough. Lois Keefrider proposes another team-up — chocolate and zucchini.

Keefrider’s Chocolate Zucchini Cake gives the dark brown favorite a twist that should inspire health and vegetable fans.

“The zucchini doesn’t add a whole lot of flavor to the cake, but it adds a lot of moisture,” said Keefrider, who adds diced pieces of zucchini into the cake mix.

“It’s a very chocolaty cake,” she added. “Just before baking, you sprinkle it with chocolate chips so you’ve got double chocolate. It’s excellent the way it is. There’s really no need to put frosting on it, but if you choose to, a little whipped cream or ice cream is certainly a nice complement. But this is really so moist and so flavorful, it’s really not necessary.”

Flavor — or lack thereof — is just one reason bakers should grab a zucchini from the garden or farm market. There’s another: “It’s a great alternative to the ever-popular zucchini bread,” Keefrider said. “The zucchini bakes right into the cake, so no one would know it is in there.”

Keefrider even has a word to describe the cake: “Scrumptious.”

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

2 cups peeled and finely diced zucchini

1⁄2 cup butter, softened

1⁄2 cup vegetable oil

13⁄4 cups sugar

2 whole eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

1⁄2 cup sour milk (add 1 teaspoon lemon juice to 1⁄2 cup milk and let stand 5 minutes before using)

2 1⁄2 cups flour

4 tablespoons cocoa

1⁄2 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1⁄2 teaspoon cinnamon

1⁄2 teaspoon ground cloves

1⁄3 cup chocolate chips

To dice the zucchini, use a large vegetable with good firm flesh. Cut in into halves or thirds, then slice lengthwise into quarters and remove the center part of seeds. Peel, then dice into 1⁄4-inch cubes.

Cream butter, oil and sugar. Add eggs, vanilla and sour milk and beat with mixer until well-blended. Mix together all dry ingredients and add to creamed mixture. Beat well with mixer. Stir in diced zucchini.

Spoon batter into greased and floured 9-by-13-by-2-inch pan and sprinkle with chocolate chips.

Bake at 325 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. No frosting is required, as cake is rich and moist enough without it.

Categories: Food, Life and Arts

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