Friday, May 30, 2008

The garden overfloweth....

If you have a garden, you know that only one little zucchini plant will feed a family all season. You also know that it is hard to use them all up so you need a variety of recipes to shake things up. You can only steam so many. I will try to pass on a few of my favorites to you this next week as my cute little zucc's are multiplying and I need to go check my recipe books. I am sure that everyone has a good zucchini bread recipe, but just in case, I will give you my favorite which I use as a mini muffin recipe. You can adapt it with less sugar and change out half the oil for applesauce. But first, as always, lets explore why we all should be eating this summer squash:
Zucchini's are high in fiber especially if you leave on the peel. They are very high in manganese, magnesium, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, riboflavin, thiamine, Vitamin A , B6, Vitamin C and Zinc. They are very low in calories, just about 16 calories for 1/2 cup. I can't stand when they are cooked to the point that they are mushy, which is also not a good thing because over cooking will destroy some of the nutritional properties. Try to keep them lightly cooked or raw. They are great in smoothies as they don't have much of a taste when raw. You can grate them and put them in all kinds of salads and meals. If you don't have a garden, these plants are real easy to grow in about any corner of the yard. They don't require much love but will give back way more than you put into them. You can still plant them and even if you have a plant, plant another now to get a second crop. The plants do stop producing at a certain point.
This is our breakfast this morning with a little fresh fruit. Make a bunch, they freeze really well:

Zucchini Bread / Muffins


3 eggs, 2 cups coconut sugar, 1 cup oil
3 cups whole wheat flour
3 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
3 cups finely grated zucchini, peel on
1 cups nuts, optional

Mix all together and fill muffin pans or loaves. Bake loaves at 350 for 30-45 minutes or mini muffins for about 12 minutes. Larger muffins about 15-18.
*You can switch out one cup of wheat flour for another type of grain flour. And as always, lower sugar if desired.

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