Zucchini Season: One plant is more than enough … or just make Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

It is that time of year – zucchini coming out our you-know-where … we know that one plant will produce plenty for our small household, but we always plant two, because, well, you never know. But you should know that BOTH plants will produce prolifically and you’ll be up to your eyeballs in zucchini. That’s okay because there’s Dana Zia’s enthusiastic recipe for double dark chocolate zucchini “bread”. Which really “mis-named” as this is more like a cake or brownie, I put mine in muffin cups for easy grab and go, and didn’t even bother with the ganache topping. Getting ready to make another batch to freeze for later – if we don’t enthusiastically eat it! Enjoy!

Double Dark Chocolate Zucchini Bread (or Muffins)
Dana Zia – Golightly Gourmet – Adapted from Cooking Light

1/2 cup of sugar
3/4 cup of brown sugar
1/2 cup of cream cheese
1/3 cup of a neutral vegetable oil such as avocado
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon of real vanilla
2.5 cups of WW pastry flour or unbleached flour (or use almond flour to make gluten-free)
1/2 cup of unsweetened dark cocoa powder
(can substitute Dutch processed cocoa)
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
3/4 cup of fat free buttermilk
2 cups of grated zucchini
1 cup of dark chocolate chips
(or semi-sweet)
1/2 cup of chopped nuts (walnuts are good – I used pecans)

1/2 cup of chocolate chips, melted in a double boiler or zap for a 30 seconds at a time in the microwave in a glass bowl. Take out and stir then put back in the microwave for another 30 seconds till all melted.

Heat up the oven to 350 degrees. Get out two bread loaf pans, and lightly oil. (I like to use glass ones cause they don’t change the flavor.) Enthusiastically cream together sugars and cream cheese with a mixer. Add in the oil and mix till more creamy, then add the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla, till well blended.

In a medium bowl, add all the dry ingredients, flour through the cinnamon, and whisk enthusiastically together till it looks perfect. With the blender on, add the flour mixture, then buttermilk alternatively, beginning and ending with the flour blend, till all is just mixed in. With the mixer on low, and add the zucchini, chocolate chips and nuts and stir till just mixed in. Don’t overdue it! The mix will be quite watery, due to all that wonderfully enthusiastic zucchini. Don’t worry, it bakes up great!

Pour equally into the bread pans and bake for about an hour, till the house if filled with that magical chocolate smell and a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool for about 20-25 minutes in the pan, then turn out on a cooling rack to finish cooling. Glaze with a ½ cup of melted chocolate chips and enthusiastically enjoy!