When you think zucchini you’re not likely to think cake, but here’s one that unusually has this green vegetable as its main ingredient. My late mother-in-law Betsy used to make this cake all the time, and it was one of my favorites. It has that delicious winter spicy taste that I think goes perfectly with a Thanksgiving meal, and most importantly for that post-Turkey dessert, it’s parev. It may not look gorgeous, but it’s moist and tastes wonderful.
This recipe makes one large cake or two loaves that serve about 16. I also halve it and bake it in a 24 cm round pan when I don’t need to feed lots of guests. You can also prepare them as muffins. Another advantage: It freezes well, so make it today and freeze it, so you can save time on your Thursday cooking.
1 cup vegetable oil
1¾ cups sugar
2 cups grated zucchini
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons cinnamon powder
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
1 cup dried cranberries, raisins or chocolate chips or a combination thereof (optional)
How to do it
1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC (350ºF)
2. Grease two 20x10cm (8×4 inch) loaf pans or one 28 cm (11 inch) spring-form pan. Or line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.
3. In a mixer, beat the eggs and add the oil and sugar, then zucchini and vanilla.
4. Combine flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder and salt, as well as nuts, chocolate chips or dried fruit, if using, and stir into the egg mixture.
5. Divide the batter into prepared loaf pans, muffin cups or pour into the baking pan.
6. Bake loaves for 45-55 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Muffins will bake far more quickly, approximately 15-20 minutes.