Zucchini Chocolate Cake

After a busy, yet fun-filled Summer my family and I ate plenty of delicious foods in Peru and good ‘ole Southern foods in South Carolina.  Now that we are getting back to our usual routine and my children will be starting the new school year soon I wanted to eat plenty of home cooked vegetarian meals.  I don’t know about you, but after eating rich foods for most of the Summer, I started craving for some fresh vegetarian foods.

 My dear cousin has been supplying me with fresh CSA vegetables so I made my “power pasta sauce” today.  I usually dice plenty of onions and lots of sliced/minced/crushed garlics and sauté until onions are softened; add plenty of diced multi-colored bell peppers, zucchini/squash, and beets – sauté for few minutes and add little of crushed basil and oregano; add chopped greens (I usually use kale, but today I used beet greens) and spinach.   Sauté until the greens cook down and add 2 jars of your favorite pasta sauce – simmer for 30 minutes and it’s done!!  Cook up your favorite pasta and dig in!  I love squirting some sriracha and grated parmesan – so delicious!! 

I still had plenty of zucchini left over so I decided to make a zucchini cake.  This is quite different from zucchini bread and it definitely satisfied my cravings for a cake!  This is an old recipe I had and it is a “healthier” version of regular cake recipe. 

IMG_7260

Makes 1 – 9x13inch pan

2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup Splenda
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup good quality unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
4 eggs
1 cup oil ( I usually use safflower or sunflower oil)
3 cups grated zucchini
1 banana (grated with the zucchini inside the food processor or mashed)
1/2 cup dried sour cherries

Mix all the dry ingredients; add the eggs and oil and mix well. 

Fold in the grated zucchini, banana, and dried sour cherries until blended well. 

Grease the 9×13 pan, pour in the batter, and in a pre-heated 350F oven bake for about 50 minutes.   Check with the bamboo skewer to see if it’s done (no batter should stick to the skewer; if it sticks leave the cake in the oven for 5-7 more minutes). 

My opinion: This is a very moist cake.  You won’t even know that this is the “healthier” version, unless you are used to eating pound cake all the time…    This recipe is very versatile, if you want richer cake, just add butter instead of oil (omit the banana), all granulated sugar instead of Splenda & brown sugar.   Instead of dried sour cherries you can add chocolate chips and/or nuts.   I decided not to make any frostings, but you can easily use your favorite frostings on this cake.  

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