I am always trying to find a way to get more vegetables in diet, this seems like an especially yummy way to do it.
Chocolate & Zucchini Cake
– 1 1/2 C (180 g) all-purpose flour
– 1/2 C (60 g) whole wheat flour (of course, you can just use 2 C / 240 g all-purpose flour, I was just trying to be good)
– 1/2 C (40 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
– 1 tsp baking soda
– 1/2 tsp baking powder
– 1/2 tsp salt
– 1/2 C (110 g) butter, softened
– 1 C (160 g) light brown sugar
– 1 tsp vanilla extract
– 1 tsp instant coffee granules (the Nescafé type, the stronger the better)
– 3 eggs, at room temperature
– 2 C zucchini, unpeeled, grated (about 280 g, two medium)
– 1 C (170 g) chocolate chips
– 40 g light brown sugar
– 1/2 C (70 g) hazelnuts, toasted and chopped
Preheat the oven to 180°C (360°F). Grease a 3 quart (3 L) springform cake pan, and flour it or sprinkle with cocoa powder : this is to help the cake unmold easily, especially if you’re not using a magic non-stick pan.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
In your food processor, combine the sugar and butter, and mix until fluffy. Add in the vanilla extract and espresso powder, then the eggs, one at a time, mixing thoroughly between each addition.
Spoon in the flour mixture, reserving the last half-cup of it. Mix thoroughly, the batter will be thick.
Add the grated zucchini and the chocolate chips to the reserved flour mixture, and toss to coat. Fold in the batter, and blend thoroughly, it’s fun. Pour into the prepared cake pan, and flatten the surface with a spatula.
In a small bowl, combine the topping ingredients, and sprinkle all over the batter. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Turn out on a rack to cool for half an hour, then unmold.
Another great site for yummy things is http://cupcakeblog.com/
What I like most about the cupcake blog, is the photography. The lighting and framing is creative and unexpected. Most food shots tend to be kind of the same, no offense to food photogs (there are some great ones out there.) I actually think some of the food blogs have better images than many over-produced magazines – the exception being Gourmet.
There is so much imagery in the world these days, much of it very good, it makes me consider what it takes to be a visual artist now. I think depending on your visual aesthetic and acumen is not enough, anyone with a good eye for color and basic tech sense can get pretty great images with a good digital camera, good light and good subject matter. The only way to elevate your work is through conceptual framework. But again, there is a lot of exceedingly well shot and conceptually valid work out there, that is where punctum comes in for me. While my understanding of it is slightly different than Roland Barthes, I know I respond more to work that hits me deeper. It is often hard to describe how or why some images hit or miss, and I certainly do not think all images need to function this way. Photographs must have a lot of things going for them, to make them go from good to sublime.
Some shots from the Cupcake Blog.