When I was a kid, if you asked me what my least favorite vegetable was I'd ineviatably say zucchini. With its spongey texture and mild, un-inspiring, slightly-bitter flavor, eating zucchini was, errrr... challenging. Unfortunately for me, zucchinis didn't just show up in picture books to represent the last letter of the alphabet, they were a regular on the dinner table—often hidden in dishes as the soggy, frightening filler-vegetable. With the passage of time, I have come to appreciate a good zucchini—perfect in a ratatouille, or spiralized as a healthful pasta replacement. I even enjoy them now in their most basic form—sliced in disks and sauteed with some oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Time heals most flavor greivances.
Nevertheless, we are here today to talk about zucchini incorporated into a sweet recipe—something that pairs well with coffee. If you're anything like me, the million dollar question is—what's the trick to making a delicious zucchini bread without adding choclatate? The answer is, to load it up with flavor! Zucchini makes a great base, adds lots of moisuture but—as previously discussed—is seriously lacking in the flavor department. Cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and orange are the not-so-secret ingredients I use in this recipe that make it a real palate pleaser. The taste profile of this loaf also lends itself beautifully to peak zucchini season, as the end of summer nears and cooler weather is just around the corner. If chocolate is your thing, I bet you'd have a lot of success mixing chocolate chips into this batter as well.
Referred to as courgette or marrow in other parts of the world, this vegetable isn’t actually a vegetable but is a fruit! In botanical terms a zucchini is considered a berry. Zucchinis also fall in the category of summer squash, which means they are harvested while their skin is still tender and edible.
Zucchini Bread ( V + GF )
2 Tbsp Chia Seeds
6 Tbsp Water
2 cups Quick Cooking Oats ( GF )
1 ½ cups Almond Flour
2 tsp Cinnamon
1 ½ tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
½ tsp Salt
1/8 tsp ground Nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground Cloves
3 Cups Grated Zucchini ( packed )
1/3 cup Coconut Oil ( in liquid form, I used MCT oil )
1/4 cup Maple Syrup
1/4 cup Coconut Sugar ( + extra for topping )
Zest of ½ an Orange
2 Tbsp Orange Juice
2 tsp Vanilla
3/4 cup Unsweeted Shredded Coconut ( + extra for topping )
Prepare binder by adding chia and water to a small bowl. Set aside.
Pre-heat oven to 350° and line a 9 inch or 1lb loaf pan with parchment paper.
In a large bowl add all dry ingredients: oats, almond flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cloves, and nutmeg. Mix thoroughly.
In a medium bowl, combine grated zucchini with coconut oil, maple syrup, coconut sugar, orange juice, orange zest, and vanilla. Stir well.
Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until fully incorporated.
Stir in shredded coconut.
Pour zucchini mixture into parchment lined loaf pan and level out batter using a spatuala or the back of a spoon.
In a small bowl or ramekin, mix together a little shredded coconut & coconut sugar. Sprinkle mixture evenly on top of batter.
Place loaf in pre-heated oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour, checking on the loaf at 45 minutes.
Once baked through and nicely browned, remove from oven and place on a cooling rack.
For best results, after about 30 minutes of cooling, remove loaf from pan and completely cool on drying rack before slicing—the loaf can sit wrapped in its baking parchment over night.
Slice & Enjoy with your morning coffee!
*As the zucchini bread is very most, it will keep best if it’s stored in an air tight container in the refrigerator.
The coffee I am pairing with this Zucchini Bread was a very special gift from Nita who I connected with through Instagram. Nita is a barista competitor and serious coffee lover who lives just outside of Jakarta. She had some family members traveling from Toronto to Jakarta this summer, so we decided to do a coffee swap courtesy of their luggage (thank you Nita’s family!!). I sent her two coffee’s from Canadian Roaster Lüna Coffee, while Nita sent back coffees from two different Indonesian Roasters: Smoking Barrels & Ismaja Kopi. The coffee pictured here is Smoking Barrels Kayo Dungai Penuh, Black Honey process with notes of tangerine, blueberries and passion fruit. It was grown and roasted in Indonesia.