Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Cashew - Zucchini Bread

Fall is starting to settle in. I know that mostly because I spent most of my three day weekend cooking and baking. To me there is nothing better on a chilly Saturday afternoon than to listen to A Prairie Home Companion on NPR, pour myself a glass of wine, and cook something delicious.

One of my recent cooking goals has been to utilize all the cookbooks I have and the magazines I am subscribed to more often. I usually go straight for the Internet, whether it be Food Network or Epicurious, but I have so many untapped resources at my disposal, I felt like I was wasting them.

So this weekend I went into the latest issue of Food & Wine Magazine with a mission, and found a yummy looking zucchini-yogurt bread recipe. I happened to have a zucchini in the fridge and some leftover plain yogurt from curry night last week. I realized I had every single ingredient except for the walnuts that it called for. Since I really did not want to go to the store and spend 7 bucks on a tub of walnuts, I took a gander into my pantry. Lo and behold, I had almost an entire jar of cashews. Ah, a sigh of relief. A nut substitution never hurt anything. Plus reading a recipe and knowing you have such a well stocked pantry that you don't have to brave the rain and cold weather to run to the store, is an AMAZING feeling. Trust me on this.

So here it is:

Cashew-Yogurt-Zucchini Bread
adapted (barely) from Food & Wine Magazine

Makes one 9-inch loaf, this would probably be enough batter for 12 muffins, but I haven't attempted that yet. If anyone tries it that way, please let me know how it turned out!

1 cup cashews - coarsely chopped
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 medium zucchini, coarsely grated (about 1 cup)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup plain yogurt

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Butter and flour a 9 X 5 loaf pan. (do this very well, when I turned my loaf out to cool, the bottom stuck a little and only the top half came out. Luckily, it was still really really hot. I quickly stuck them back together and they seemed to almost bake back into a cohesive loaf).

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, the baking powder, the baking soda, and the salt.
In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, vegetable oil, and yogurt.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and whisk lightly just until incorporated. Add the grated zucchini and cashews, and mix until evenly dispersed.

Pour batter into loaf pan, and bake for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Mine ended up taking about an hour and a half, just make sure to do the toothpick test. I use bamboo skewers since they are really long, and I have less chance of burning myself. Stick a skewer or toothpick into the center of the loaf, and if it comes out clean, it is done.

Let the bread rest in the pan on a rack for at least 30 minutes before trying to take it out of the pan. This was my mistake, I got impatient, it just smelled so good.

This bread was really good, if not a bit bland. I suppose that's what you get for making a semi-healthy quick bread, with no butter and just a small amount of sugar. Next time I would probably add a citrus component, maybe some lemon or orange zest to give it that little extra something. It was great with some butter or homemade jam spread on top.





2 comments:

Erin said...

How much zucchini is supposed to go in there and how should I prepare it?

HollowPeas said...

Erin,

Wow even when I read and re-read my recipes, somehow I still leave (very important) things out!!

I used one medium zucchini. Just grate it coarsely, and add it raw to the batter. I am editing the post as I speak!

Sorry for the confusion, do try the bread though, it is delicious.

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