It's August, and I believe that loosely translates to "month of zucchini." A couple of years ago I wrote a post in August that said, "There is no such thing as too much zucchini." I still feel that way, but you definitely need to get creative to cope with the drive-by squashings. (You know what I mean: your coworkers leave them on your desk, your parents and friends drop them off, neighbors leave them on the doorstep. . . meanwhile, you're still picking them from your own garden. . .)
I wrote about one of my favorite zucchini meals a few months ago, and today I'm sharing a recipe for zucchini brownies. Folks, these are practically health food—very little oil, some whole-wheat flour, some fat-free yogurt, tons of grated zucchini—so of course I had to add frosting. (They're good without frosting, too.)
1 large zucchini, minus the pulpy seedy center, shredded (approximately 2 cups once drained)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white whole wheat flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa (+ a little extra...heck, maybe even 1/2 cup. Let's not skimp on the cocoa.)
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 large egg
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup plain non-fat yogurt
1 cup chocolate chunks/chips
Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a 9 x 13 pan with nonstick cooking spray. Place grated zucchini in a colander. Sprinkle with salt and allow to drain 20 to 30 minutes. Wring out as much water as possible. Set aside.
Whisk together the flours, unsweetened cocoa and baking soda in a medium bowl. Set aside. In a large bowl, beat egg, sugar, yogurt, and canola oil together. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients. Mix well. Stir in the zucchini and chocolate chunks. Pour into the prepared pan.
Bake 35 to 40 minutes until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. (Well, clean-ish, since the chocolate chips will be melty.)
I tasted these right out of the oven, and even though they were moist and chocolatey, they were screaming for vanilla Heath bar frosting (has a brownie ever done that to you?). So here goes:
3 Tbsp butter, softened
1 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
2 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla
Heath bars, crumbled (or toffee pieces)
Cream the butter and mix in the sugar, milk, and vanilla until smooth. You may need to add a bit more sugar or milk to get the consistency just right. Then you can either stir in the crumbled toffee pieces, or frost the brownies and sprinkle the toffee on top. Your choice! Yum.
Hope this helps you work through that mountain o' gourd. Please let me know if you try it! If you have your own variation of zucchini brownies (or any other summer squash recipes...we need all the help we can get!), feel free to share your comments below!