Fresh From the Garden Healthier Zucchini Bread

 

What to do with all that zucchini from the garden? Make zucchini bread of course!

This is my favorite recipe for zucchini bread. It was inspired by this recipe. I switched out the all-purpose flour for King Arthur 100% Organic White Whole Wheat Flour. I like using whole grains whenever possible and using this white whole wheat flour gave it a richer, nutty taste.

I also substituted melted organic coconut oil for the vegetable oil. I am trying to avoid corn and canola oil and prefer the healthier aspects of the coconut oil.

You could add nuts, chocolate chips, or whatever you like to this. My grandkids like it just the way it is and they eat a whole loaf up quicker than you can bat an eye!

I hope you will try this recipe and let me know how you like it.

Fresh From the Garden Healthier Zucchini Bread

Yield: 2 loaves

Ingredients:

3 cups King Arthur 100% Organic White Whole Wheat Flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

3 teaspoons ground cinnamon ( I love the Kirkland Signature Ground Saigon Cinnamon from Costco)

3 eggs

1 cup organic coconut oil – melted

2 1/4 cups sugar

1 Tbsp vanilla extract (Do not use imitation vanilla extract. Ever! For anything!)

2 cups grated zucchini (about 2 medium sized zucchinis)

Directions:

-Preheat oven to 325º (I used the convection/bake setting on my oven but the regular setting is fine)

-Grease and flour two loaf pans.

-Sift flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon together in a bowl.

-Beat eggs, coconut oil, sugar, and vanilla in bowl of standing mixer until well combined. (Or stir by hand)

-Add dry ingredients to the mixing bowl and beat on low until combined. It is best to use a mixer here as the batter will be thick.

-Add the zucchini to the mixture and mix on low speed just until combined.

– Spread batter into the prepared pans.

-Bake for 40-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. (Mine took about 47 minutes.)

-Cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely.

Enjoy!

 

Let’s Bake Those Hot Cross Buns!

So. Those hot cross buns I made for my book club. Yep. Gotta say, they were delish!

I adapted a recipe from The Pioneer Woman that I found here. I do love the PW. I think her and I could be besties. Hey Ree! I played with the ingredients a bit to use stuff that I had on hand so I didn’t have to run out to the grocery store in my jammies.

I messed up a step when I was adding the yeast so I started a second batch just in case. Even with the mess up both batches were yummy. I ended up with about 48 buns. The neighbors were happy to receive the extras! (It also helps placate them while we have construction going on in our backyard.) The construction guys were pretty happy to get some also. It takes energy to pound those nails.

First I heated up some condensed milk, water, canola oil, and sugar to just under a boil. I let it cool for awhile until it was about 120°. You need it about this temperature for the yeast to do its magic when you sprinkle it in. I forgot to sprinkle the yeast on the liquids before I mixed in the flour on the first batch! Wasn’t sure what was going to happen but it was all good!

After adding some of the dry ingredients it was time to let it rise for a bit. I like to use Pillsbury flour when I do my baking. It gives me consistent results and I trust the brand.

Multiple risings going on here. Look at those cute towels. That is my Grandma Jessie’s cornbread recipe on them!

After the rise and adding a bit more of the dry ingredients it was time to turn the dough out on to the counter and incorporate the cinnamon sugar and raisins. This was a fun step. Play Doh anyone?

I formed the dough into golf ball sized pieces and placed them on the cookie sheet and let them rise again.

Then it was time to brush them with the glaze, pop them in the oven, let them cool, and drizzle that yummy frosting cross on them.

This recipe makes buns that are light, almost croissant-like. The cinnamon sugar/raisin ratio is perfect. So so good with a cup (or two) of good coffee in the morning.

Let me know if you try them for your Easter festivities this year. These will for sure be a part of our tradition from now on!

Books and Buns Hot Cross Buns

Yield: about 24 buns

1  12oz can Carnation® Evaporated milk

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup canola oil

1/2 cup C&H sugar

1 package fast rising yeast (2 1/4 tsp)

4 cups Pillsbury All-purpose Flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup raisins

1 egg white

Splash of heavy cream

ICING

1/4 cup warm water

1 TBSP light corn syrup

1/4 tsp almond extract

3 cups powdered sugar

Combine the evaporated milk, water, canola, and 1/2 cup sugar in a saucepan. Heat over med low heat while stirring to just under a boil. Set aside and let cool to 120°.

Transfer liquid to a large bowl. Sprinkle yeast over liquid. Add 4 cups of flour and mix until combined. Dough will be sticky. Cover with a really cute towel and let rise for one hour.

Mix 1/2 cup flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl. Add to dough and stir until combined.

Combine cinnamon and 1/4 cup sugar in small bowl.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and press to flatten a bit. Sprinkle a third of the cinnamon sugar and a third of the raisins on top. Fold the dough over on itself and flatten it again. Repeat with a sprinkling of a third of the cinnamon sugar and a third of the raisins. Fold it again and repeat the sprinkles one more time. Fold it again.

Put a little bit of flour on your hands and roll golf ball sized rolls. Turn the edges of the balls under themselves slightly to get a nice rounded shape. Place on a lightly greased cookie sheet and cover and let rise one hour in a warm place.

Preheat oven to 400°

Mix egg white with a splash of heavy cream and brush on each bun when they have finished rising.

Bake for 16-18 minutes or until tops of buns are deep golden brown.

Remove from pan and all to cool on a cooling rack.

Make icing:

Stir warm water, corn syrup and almond extract in a small bowl until syrup have dissolved. Add liquid to the powered sugar and beat with a hand mixer until smooth.

Once buns are cooled, scoop icing into a small zippered sandwich bag and snip the corner a little bit. Make the crosses with the icing on each bun.

 

 

 

 

 

Books and Buns

Book club! Who’s in one? I LOVE mine. We just celebrated the nine year anniversary of ours. We call ourselves the WWWW. Wacky Wednesday Wino Weaders. Let me tell you, we have fun.

Look at that wine glass! Perfect for our WWWW.

There are seven of us in our book club. We are all neighbors. Last night we were reminiscing about how when we started we were really just acquaintances. A friendly wave to each other and neighborly chit chat was about the extent of our relationship.

Over these last nine years we have developed a special bond that we each treasure. We know that if any one of us needed something the others would be right there for us.

We have read 93 books together. Some amazing ones. Some ok ones. Some not so amazing ones. We have laughed, cried, agreed, disagreed and had some great wine (I mean discussions!).

So what, do you ask, do those hot cross buns pictured above have to do with books. I will tell you!

The book that we read for last night’s meeting was “The Husband’s Secret” by Liane Moriarty. It was a great book and we all gave it the thumbs up. The story is set in Australia and part of the story takes place on Good Friday. Well, I guess everyone in Australia eats hot cross buns on Good Friday because for a while in the book it seems like every single character is eating one! The author made them sound so good. I am telling you, it gave me a craving for one, even though I really couldn’t remember ever eating hot cross bun. So I HAD to make some to take last night. Because…… carbs, cinnamon, raisins, frosting. I think we may have a new Good Friday tradition in our house!

Do you like to read? Are you in a book club? I highly recommend it!