As if my CSA zucchini wasn’t enough, my friend brought me more beautiful zucchini from her garden. I made four loaves of this bread (two batches) with a single zucchini! Amazing.
This recipe was adapted from Smitten Kitchen. I incorporated whole wheat flour. As suggested, I used less sugar and also omitted the add-ins. We ate some, shared some, and froze some for later. This loaf improves with time- perfect to make the night before serving it for breakfast. I imagine it would also be delicious lightly toasted and topped with butter.
Yield: 2 loaves or 24 muffins
3 large eggs
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup sunflower oil (can also used olive oil or another vegetable oil)
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar (can also used half (or even all) turbinado or half light brown sugar)
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp fine sea salt
2 cups grated, packed zucchini, not wrung out (from about 10 oz zucchini)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, optional
1 to 2 cup dried cranberries, raisins, or chocolate chips (or a combination), optional
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, preferably on convection.
Generously grease 2 loaf pans (8×4 or 9×5) with butter and flour or with nonstick spray. Alternatively, grease 24 standard muffin cups or line with paper liners.
Whisk eggs, oil, butter, sugar, and vanilla in the bottom of a large bowl.
Sprinkle cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder, and salt over the wet ingredients and whisk them in well.
Stir in zucchini.
Gently stir in flours, mixing only until incorporated.
Fold in any add-ins, if using.
Divide between prepared pans and bake for 55 to 65 minutes for a loaf, 20 to 25 minutes for muffins, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Let cool for 10 minutes on a rack before inverting and removing from the pans. The loaves can also cool completely in pans.
Store wrapped in foil at room temperature for up to 5 days. Loaves also freeze well.
I have a couple more zucchini recipes to share. I receive a healthy amount of zucchini in my CSA share and I enjoy finding new dishes to make with all of it. I recently roasted a zucchini or two with fresh thyme and CSA onions, then added my special CSA corn (raw), and used it as a calzone filling. Delicious!
I knew that I would really enjoy this wonderful zucchini dish because it incorporates farro and arugula- my favorites. I ate it as a main course but my husband ate it as a side with grilled chicken and roasted potatoes. Everyone was happy. 🙂
This recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Sarah Jampel. I roasted the zucchini and increased the amount of arugula. I also decreased the amount of salt and oil and used a combination of basil, predominantly, with parsley, and oregano in the finished dish.
1cup soft, fragrant herbs, such basil, mint, tarragon, or a combination, roughly torn or cut
freshly ground black pepper
2 to 4 large handfuls of arugula
1 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
Parmigiano Reggiano, for shaving
Rinse and drain the farro and chickpeas. Add both to a medium pot with 2 large pinches of salt and add water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, skim foam from the top, then reduce heat to a simmer and cook until farro is tender, about 25 minutes.
Meanwhile, divide your squash haul in half. With one group, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch thick planks. Reserve the other 1/2 pound for later.
Place the zucchini planks on a parchment paper-lined rimmed baking sheet. Toss with 1 to 2 T olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
In a preheated 425 degree oven, roast the zucchini planks until lightly browned and tender, about 10 minutes per side. (I set my oven to convention roast.)
Transfer browned zucchini to a shallow dish and, if desired, cut the planks into 2-inch pieces. (I cut mine.)
In a small bowl, whisk together 4 T olive oil, garlic, vinegar, and half the herbs. Season with salt and pepper.
Pour about half the dressing over the zucchini and let marinate while you finish making the salad. Set remaining dressing aside.
Use a vegetable peeler to shave the rest of the zucchini into ribbons (here’s the easiest way: lay the zucchini on a cutting board, then drag the peeler across it). If your farro is far from done, you can preserve the zucchini strands by soaking them in cold salt water. Drain and pat dry before using.
Drain the farro and chickpeas and transfer to a large mixing bowl. (I returned mine to the pot.)
Toss with the reserved dressing and season with salt and pepper.
Add arugula, zucchini ribbons, marinated zucchini, lemon juice and Parmesan shavings. Gently toss to combine and adjust seasonings, if necessary.
Transfer to a serving bowl or platter and top with the remaining herbs and more arugula and Parmesan, as desired.
I celebrated a milestone birthday earlier this summer. Part of my birthday celebration was inspired by this dish. 🙂
The James Beard-nominated chef and owner of Dirt Candy in NYC, Amanda Cohen, was featured on Sara Moulton’s PBS series. She prepared a cocktail along with this zucchini dish from her menu. Dirt Candy is a very unique vegetarian restaurant and I knew the only way I could get my entire family to dine there was for a birthday meal. We went for a birthday brunch celebration and then spent the day enjoying NYC.
Cohen explained that although she is not a vegetarian, she feels that a chef can be much more innovative when creating dishes without being limited by simply pairing sides with a protein. The brunch menu included a mushroom coffee cake on our visit. My son ate the whole thing! Our favorite dish was the Brussels sprout tacos, served with lettuce wraps and a platter of small bowls of topping choices. Delicious. We finished our meal with cucumber sorbet topped with a birthday candle. 🙂
The zucchini pasta recipe was adapted from Sara Moulton.com. I modified the proportions and the method. The saffron made the dish exceptional. I also made homemade Greek yogurt labneh to incorporate into the dish. The labneh recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit via epicurious.com, contributed by Tom Scherlitz.
Yield: Serves 4 to 6
To Make Greek Yogurt Labneh: (Makes about 1 1/2 cups)
2 cups plain 2% Greek yogurt
Line a large sieve with cheesecloth; set over a medium deep bowl.
Place yogurt in sieve. Gather edges of cheesecloth to cover yogurt. Place in refrigerator and let drain for 2-3 days. (I let it drain for 48 hours.
Gently squeeze out any excess liquid; discard liquid in bowl (yogurt will be very thick and resemble soft goat cheese).
For the Zucchini Pasta Dish:
2 to 3 medium zucchini or 4 cups baby zucchini (I used 2 1/2 medium zucchini)
6 T extra virgin olive oil, divided
pinch of saffron
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups labneh, recipe above
1 to 2 pounds zucchini spiral noodles
8 to 12 oz angel hair pasta
1/4 cup minced cilantro
1/4 cup chiffonade basil or mint
2 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
zest of 1 lemon
1 cup squash blossoms sliced thinly, optional
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
If using medium zucchini, slice in half and then into 1/4″ half moons. If using the baby zucchini , cut into rounds.
Toss the cut zucchini with 4 T of the olive oil.
Grill over high heat until the zucchini has developed char marks, about 3-4 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, cook the angel hair pasta according to the package directions. Drain, reserving 2 cups of pasta water.
In a pan over medium heat add the remaining 2 T of olive oil, saffron and the garlic. Once the garlic becomes fragrant, about 1 minute, turn the heat to low and add the labneh and 1 cup of the reserved pasta water.
Stir slowly, incorporating everything together.
Toss the sauce with the zucchini noodles, the angel hair pasta, the herbs, the lemon juice, and the lemon zest.
Adjust seasonings and then divide between 4 bowls.
Sprinkle each bowl with the squash blossom ribbons, if using, as well as minced herbs, as desired.
I have a quite a few summer recipes to share. 🙂 I loved this simple salad so much, I had to post it first. I’ve already made it a couple of times! It is composed of many of my seasonal favorites. Bright, fresh, creamy, crunchy and absolutely perfect.
This recipe is from The New York Times, contributed by Lidey Heuck. I used half of the dressing. I made the salad with white peach slices, but it would also be wonderful with sliced nectarines or mango. The author also suggested substituting cherries, strawberries, plums, raspberries or even cherry tomatoes. Lovely.
Yield: Serves 4 to 6 as an appetizer or side salad
1/4cup (4 T) pine nuts or walnuts
2 to 4 T extra-virgin olive oil
1 to 2 T champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
1/2tsp kosher salt
1/4tsp black pepper
5ounces baby arugula
2ripe peaches, pitted and cut into 1/4-inch slices (about 10 ounces)
1/2cup julienned fresh basil leaves
2ounces creamy goat cheese, crumbled (about ½ cup), plus more to taste
In a small sauté pan, toast the pine nuts over medium heat, tossing often, until golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes. (I used a small cast iron skillet.) Remove from the heat.
In a small liquid measuring cup or bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. (I used 4 T olive oil and 2 T vinegar but used about half of the dressing on the salad and reserved the remaining dressing.)
Place the arugula in a large salad bowl. Pour just enough dressing over the greens to moisten, and toss to coat.
Add the peaches, basil, goat cheese and toasted pine nuts and toss to coat.
My husband and I went strawberry picking without the kids this year. I’m so happy that he loves freshly picked strawberries enough to harvest them. 🙂 We brought home nine quarts!
My list of “must make” strawberry recipes seems to keep expanding, so I was lucky enough to have plenty of berries to fulfill the list (links below) and make one new dessert- this delicious galette. I loved the graham cracker crust.
This recipe is from Bon Appétit, contributed by Claire Saffitz. We ate it with vanilla ice cream instead of the lime-flavored whipped cream. Wonderful!
Yield: 8 servings
7 graham crackers (about 3.7 ounces)
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
⅔ cup all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
5 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
2 large eggs
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted, cooled, & divided (I melted 6 T and 2 T separately)
1 pound strawberries, hulled & sliced
1 lime, zested & juiced, divided
½ cup very cold heavy cream, optional
vanilla ice cream, for serving, optional
Place a rack in bottom third of oven; preheat to 350°, preferably on convection.
Place graham crackers in a large resealable plastic bag and zip it up, pressing out most of the air. Using a rolling pin, firmly roll over crackers several times, crushing them into fine crumbs (some larger crumbs are okay).
Measure out 1 cup crumbs (which should be almost all of them) and transfer to a medium bowl. Add salt, ⅔ cup flour, and 2 T sugar. Mix with a fork to combine.
Add 1 egg and 6 T melted butter.
Mix with fork until dough forms, then knead with your hands inside of bowl until no floury spots remain and dough is smooth. It’ll be a little soft and slightly oily.
Lightly flour a piece of parchment paper and place dough on top. Lightly flour top of dough, then cover with another piece of parchment or plastic wrap.
Using a rolling pin, roll dough into a round (it doesn’t have to be perfect!) about 12″ in diameter and ⅛” thick. (I used this amazing rolling pin that creates an 1/8″ thick crust.)
Slide entire sheet of parchment paper onto a rimmed baking sheet. Remove the top layer or plastic wrap or parchment paper.
Sprinkle 1 T sugar over surface of dough, leaving about a 2″ border.
Pile strawberries into center of dough and arrange in an even layer, leaving the same 2″ border.
Sprinkle strawberries with 1 T sugar and drizzle with remaining 2 T butter.
Using a microplane or fine grater, grate zest of about one-half of lime over strawberries.
Cut off half of lime with no zest and squeeze juice over strawberries. Save the other half for later, if making the whipped cream topping.
Beat remaining egg in a small bowl with fork until no streaks remain. Brush egg wash around border of pastry (you won’t use it all). Using edges of parchment to help lift, fold empty border of dough up and over strawberries, working your way around in roughly 2″ sections, overlapping folds as needed. Press all the way around to secure folds and keep dough in place. It might crack or tear in places, just pinch it back together.
Brush top of border with remaining egg wash and sprinkle with remaining 1 T sugar.
Bake galette until crust is browned around the edges and juices from strawberries are syrupy and actively bubbling, 40–45 minutes. If some juices escape and end up on the parchment paper, the parchment will prevent the tart from sticking.
Let cool at least 20 minutes.
For the Optional Whipped Cream Topping: Beat cream with a large whisk in a medium bowl until voluminous, thick, and starts to hold tracks of whisk. Hold whisk upright and look for the “peak” of cream that forms on the end. It should droop and slump over- making “soft peaks.”
Grate zest from remaining half of lime over cream and serve with tart.
Do Ahead: Tart can be made several hours ahead. Let sit at room temperature. Once fully cooled, droop a piece of plastic over top. (I kept the leftover slices in the refrigerator.)
Essential Freshly Picked Strawberry Recipes (in my house):
I was already in love with farro but this dish made me love it even more. This is another wonderful meal from one of my favorite chefs, Sara Moulton. Yes, I saw her prepare it on her PBS show, Sara’s Weeknight Meals. 🙂
This recipe was adapted from Sara mouton.com. I modified the proportions and used Trader Joe’s farro. I also used 25 count large shrimp but would use true jumbo shrimp next time to make sure they are perfectly tender in the finished dish. Fast and Fabulous!
Yield: Serves 4
For the Farro:
1 1/2 cups farro (I used Trader Joe’s 10 minute farro)
3 cups chicken stock
For the Dish:
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 pound peeled, and deveined jumbo shrimp
1 yellow onion, chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 large garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
1 to 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
10 ounces baby spinach, torn kale, or torn mustard greens
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 cups cooked farro
1 tsp dry oregano or 1 T chopped fresh oregano
4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1 cup chicken stock
Make the farro according to the package directions. Reserve 2 cups of the prepared farro to incorporate into the dish, keeping the rest for another use.
Preheat the oven to 400 F, preferably on convection.
Heat 1 ½ tablespoons of the oil in a large skillet with a heatproof handle over high heat. (I used an enameled cast iron pan.)
Add the shrimp, season with salt and pepper, and cook, undisturbed, until the shrimp turns golden 1 minute. Turn them over and cook them until they are barely golden, about 1 minute more (they should not be cooked through). (If using smaller shrimp, decrease the cooking time to 30 seconds per side.)
Transfer the shrimp with tongs to a colander set over a bowl.
Add another tablespoon of the oil to the skillet, reduce the heat to medium low and add the onion along with a hefty pinch of salt.
Cook the onion, stirring occasionally, until it is golden, about 10 minutes.
Add the garlic, the tomatoes and the red pepper flakes and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Transfer the mixture to the colander with the shrimp.
Increase the heat to high, add the remaining 1 ½ tablespoons oil and half the greens and cook, stirring until they start to wilt. Add the remaining greens, and continue cooking until all the greens are wilted.
Add salt and pepper to taste and transfer the greens to the colander that the shrimp are in and shake it to get as much cooking liquid from the colander into the bowl as possible.
Add the wine and the reserved cooking liquid from the colander to the skillet and boil until the mixture is reduced to a few tablespoons.
Add 2 cups of cooked farro, the oregano, half the feta and the stock to the skillet and bring the stock to a boil.
Stir in all the ingredients in the colander and push the shrimp down slightly into the farro.
Top the shrimp with the remaining crumbled feta and transfer the pan to the oven. Bake for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Serve right away.
I have learned so much about cooking by watching Sara Moulton, particularly when she had a live cooking show many years ago. I’ve just started watching her PBS series and I’m thrilled. I have to watch a lot of episodes from previous seasons to catch up! 🙂
She cooked this dish on the show with her son who is reportedly obsessed with making it. We absolutely loved it too- it’s a wonderful weeknight dish. I made the “warm weather” version, serving it over salad dressed with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing, but plan to try the “cool weather” version as well, serving it over sautéed apples and cabbage with butternut squash or sweet potato purée.
This recipe was adapted from Sara Moulton.com. I used larger pork chops, used basil, thyme and cilantro in the dressing and topping, and modified the method. I served it with roasted potatoes on the side for my starch-loving husband.
Yield: 6 to 8 servings
For the Pork Chops:
four 1 inch-thick boneless pork chops
1 c buttermilk
1 t Tabasco or Chipotle Tabasco
1 large garlic clove
2 to 2 1/2 c panko bread crumbs
6 to 8 T extra virgin olive oil or vegetable oil
2 T fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, cilantro, and/or basil
lemon wedges, for serving, optional
Warm Weather Version: green salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing, for serving (dressing recipe below)
Cool Weather Version: sautéed apples and cabbage, for serving
Cool Weather Version: butternut squash or sweet potato purée, for serving
For the Buttermilk Ranch Dressing:
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup regular or low-fat mayonnaise
2 T rinsed, dried, and chopped fresh mixed herbs (tarragon, chives, parsley, thyme, basil, cilantro)
1 small garlic clove, minced or pushed through a garlic press
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
To Prepare the Pork Chops:
If time permits, freeze the pork chops for 30 minutes to make them easier to cut.
Carefully cut each horizontally to make 2 thin chops for a total of 8 chops.
Place the meat on a cutting board between 2 layers of plastic wrap. (Alternatively, sprinkle a small amount of water into a large resealable plastic bag. Place a pork chop in the bag and close, leaving 1/2 inch open.) Pound with a rolling pin or meat pounder until the chop is about 1/8 inch thick; remove and set aside. Repeat with the remaining chops.
Whisk together buttermilk, Tabasco, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a measuring cup; press in the garlic. Transfer to a large resealable plastic bag.
Place the pounded chops in the bag with buttermilk mixture, one at a time making sure each one is coated, and marinate at room temperature, turning several times, for 30 minutes.
Spread out the bread crumbs in a pie plate.
Remove the chops from the marinade and season them with salt.
Working with one chop at a time, toss the chop in the bread crumbs; shake off the excess crumbs.
Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large stainless steel, cast iron, or non-stick skillet over medium heat until hot; add half the chops. (I used a 14″ skillet over scant medium heat. Next time I will try a cast iron skillet to ease the clean up!)
Sauté them, turning once for 3 minutes per side, or until golden and just cooked through. Remove to a plate and keep warm.
Repeat with the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil and the remaining chops, adding more oil if necessary.
Chop the herbs for the topping. (I used cilantro and basil.)
Divide the pork chops among dinner plates, top each portion with come chopped herbs, and serve with a wedge of lemon. Alternatively, serve the pork chops over the dressed green salad.
To Make the Buttermilk Ranch Dressing:
Whisk together all ingredients in a measuring cup.
Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Chill until ready to serve.
Note: These pork chops are delicious hot, at room temperature, or even chilled.