SFC: Evolution of a Green Veggie

                The one good thing about all these co-op veggies my fridge is being dominated by every other week, besides the healthier(ish) eating it encourages, is all the little things it forces me to try out so that I can actually eat all of it. And as such quite a few more recipe-related post ideas come across my way to better fill the time between Trucks (I really need to make another foray down somewhere… try and get a couple more reviews in).

                For instance! I was lucky enough to come across This Blog Post by the bake-loving 350 Degrees on a Paula Deen (yeah yeah, racist political conflict, whatever; the recipes are still tasty) Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread. And right as I still had a Zucchini and Yellow Squash that needed using too! I myself still hadn’t actually had zucchini bread yet, but I love banana bread and thought it’d be fun to try.

                I’d list down the recipe before or after I began, but it’s a pure Paula Deen thing, I deviated from it somewhat based on availability, and there’s already a link (which is actually inside of the link… Link-ception! Sorta sounds like a Zelda movie with Dicaprio actually) in the previous paragraph. 

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                Gotta start off by sifting all those dry ingredients of course.

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                Before we get to the wet, gotta shred our produce fine; press those summer squash to the fine edge on the grater and work! Thank god this was so much easier than trying to do it for carrot cake… though boy that yellow squash had quite a bit of moisture (as such, I actually ended up adding a little more flour than the recipe called in hopes of balancing it out).

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                Get those eggs in a bowl and beat it like a… ummm… Polaroid picture? No that doesn’t make sense… just beat them until pale; shouldn’t need an electric mixy, whisk’ll work fine.

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                NOW we add the sugar; the recipe really calls for attention to these particular tasks to better improve the structure, with the later oil and other wet products really destabilizing what one has easily. Beat this now until it’s well-integrated, pale canary, and thick; a proper “ribbon stage.”

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                We can add all the other ingredients now other than the dry. With mine, I ended up not having an orange, so I used some lime zest instead (it actually came out really nice with the zucchini).

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                Besides that, I didn’t really feel like using the original-recipe nut addition, but purely chocolate chips like 350. Was probably gonna do Hershey’s, but found this interesting bag called “Guittard” in the store, though I’d try it out. They taste good btw.

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                Mix in the wet, add all the dry, bada-bing bada-boom, we have batter. Lube up whatever pan one wants to use (calls for a single Loaf, the previous blogger used a Bundt, and I just used a few smaller loaves), or if you’re smart and able just line it with parchment paper, and pop into a 350 oven (only raise temperature to 375 if using REALLY small pans, like muffin or whatever).

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                Mmmm, nice brown crust; should take about 50 minutes to cook, a little bit under if divided (way under if small and cooked at 375). Toothpick test of course; SHOULD note, when getting close one should make sure to really look at the toothpick even if wet. I had little pearls of the squash still sticking to some of it, despite it being fully cooked.

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                Now we just let cool and flip. Whiiiiich didn’t actually come too easy for me… you see the previous pic where I’m pouring the batter into pans? Notice how the chocolate chips sorta collected to the bottom of the bowl. Weeeellll… seems they did the same thing in the pan.

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                Yeah. Not a single one came out completely clean. I mean hey, they’re still fully cooked and VERY delicious; not to mention the outside crust was nice and crispy! Just the bottom wasn’t all that clean… and it sort of looked like a plain zucchini cake with a special lower layer vs the beautiful “studding” effect.

                If you’re looking to avoid this pitfall, I have a few main suggestions. 1: ensure your batter is thick enough to hold the chips in suspension. 2: use much smaller chocolate pieces. Or 3: try saving the chips on the side and sprinkling on top of the batter-filled loaf pan RIGHT before going in the oven. Hopefully you have better luck than I do, haha.

                So I’ve got a whole bunch of broken up, bottom-separated zucchini bread now, of which I can only eat so much as-is. What should I do with this moist bundle of goodness to turn it into something street food-reminiscent? Why, turn it into Fritters of course!

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                It’s already broke up, so why not just chop it up a bit more and squeeze it into balls of moist cake and chocolate chips. And I mean SQUEEZE; these things did NOT want to hang together too easily (which is sorta surprising, considering how moist they were, figured they’d just wanna fuse).

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                Got my itty bitty eanie-mini pot of oil up to temp, dusted the little balls in some flour, a little bit of cinnamon-sugar on the side to toss over afterward, and we good. Guess I forgot to take a pic of the actual frying process, but the results sorta speak for themselves…

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                Yeah, didn’t wanna stick together too much before, REALLY didn’t wanna stick together in the fryer. Only last a couple seconds too to get that brown crust, so it wasn’t really all that crunchy either. Though it still tasted like a donut of sorts, so potential is there. Maybe next time I’ll use a batter-covering to fry, less direct… maybe use a simple bread with no chips either, keep it to moist pieces of the cooked dough (I wonder if just using the batter itself, if thick enough, could make a nice fritter…).

                Well, a couple more veggies used, another post up, and more food in my stomach; overall it was a pretty good experiment. Thanks to 350 for the post that inspired me! To all you rest, Good Luck and Good Eating.

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