Double Chocolate Zucchini Spelt Loaf, a delicious chocolate bread with "healthier" ingredients such as shredded zucchini, extra virgin olive oil, coconut crystals, dark chocolate, and spelt flour. Great at breakfast, as an afternoon pick-me-up, and after dinner sweet treat.
Song of the day: Paradise by George Ezra.
What is always present in our pantry? Dark chocolate bars. Good ones, organic mostly, fair trade sometimes, with at least 70 % cacao and up. There's nothing that chocolate can't solve. Whenever I feel sluggish, down, sad, or peckish, I reach for a piece of dark chocolate and that can help save the day.
We have a very good recipe for a double chocolate zucchini cake, one that I make every year at the end of Summer when the abundant zucchini crop just begs to be utilized in a myriad of recipes.
This year the garden produced even more zucchini, and after having our fair share fresh, some were shredded and stored in the freezer for later use.
Time has come to use a bag of frozen shredded zucchini
The bigger zucchini are the ones I like to shred and save for cakes, loaves, and muffins. Not that the small ones wouldn't be as good, but we like to save them for savory dishes. I measure 2 cups of shredded zucchini and into a freezer bag they go. When I need them, like in the case of this Double Chocolate Zucchini Spelt Loaf I just have to take one bag out the freezer, let it thaw and squeeze out the excess moisture (do not squeeze too much, though, you need some of that moisture).
Zucchini in a cake?
Together with pumpkin, the use of zucchini in baked goods is something I learned since I came to Canada. Before, if you had asked me, I would have probably laughed at you. I am liking this cultural exchange, some of my Italian learnings pour into my new Canadian life and vice versa.
I got the inspiration for a double chocolate zucchini loaf, or bread, from a fellow Canadian food blogger, Renée Kohlman, and her wonderful cookbook "All The Sweet Things" which recently won the Taste Canada Awards for single-subject cookbooks.
I adapted her recipe and added my own touches, using ingredients like spelt flour, olive oil, coconut crystals, that you can recognize as being part of the ingredients I use the most in my baking.
The result was a wholesome zucchini bread with an inner delicious self. Moist and chocolatey, it screams decadent while being of the healthier kind. The zucchini just disappears and only provide softness, moistness, and some lovely green speckles throughout.
If you have yet to try baking with spelt flour, maybe this Double Chocolate Zucchini Spelt Loaf might be the recipe you need to take the leap. I substitute spelt flour 100 % for the all-purpose and it does not affect the proportions of the other ingredients. Although spelt flour descends from wheat and it is not a gluten-free flour, it is digestible for people with a sensitivity to gluten.
We like a slice of this loaf at breakfast with a nice cup of freshly brewed coffee, in the afternoon with tea or coffee, and after dinner with a glass of milk (that's a picture of my husband, right there, lol). Loreto describes its flavor as rich and luxurious yet not too sweet to make his teeth chatter. He said he reminded him of a cake that a next door neighbor used to make when he was a child, very moist and rich in that healthy chocolate flavor.
Hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
Song of the day: Paradise by George Ezra.Print
- 1 cup spelt flour
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ¾ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp ground cardamom
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- Scant ½ cup dark chocolate, chopped (I used 85% cacao)
- 2 eggs, organic, free-range, at room temperature
- ½ cup coconut crystals
- ½ cup raw cane sugar
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup buttermilk, at room temperature
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups shredded zucchini
- Preheat the oven to 350° F (180°C). Lightly butter a loaf pan, then line with parchment paper overhanging the sides (so it's easier to remove the loaf once cooked). Lightly butter the parchment paper.
- In a bowl add the spelt flour, then sift in the cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, cardamom, salt. Stir in the chopped dark chocolate.
- In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, coconut and cane sugars, olive oil, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the grated zucchini and stir. Pour this mixture into the dry mixture and stir until just combined.
- Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for about 50 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- Let the loaf cool in the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes, then remove from the pan and let cool completely on the rack.
- Store the double chocolate zucchini loaf in an airtight container, at room temperature, for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.
- At the end of the Summer, I shredded our homegrown zucchini, and stored them in the freezer in 2-cup portions, ready to be used in soups or baked goods. I took one portion (2 cups) out of the freezer and let it thaw at room temperature. When thawed, I just squeezed it a bit in a clean cloth to remove part of the moisture and used it in the recipe.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 50 minutes
- Category: Breakfast, Bread
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: International
Keywords: zucchini, dark chocolate, cocoa, extra virgin olive oil, cinnamon, bread, spelt flour, breakfast, cardamom
I love baking and kneading dough because it takes me to a happy place in my soul.