Prep 30 mins
Cook 45 mins
This started out with a recipe in a Penzey's spice catalog. We tried it just to get rid of some excess zucchini, but it turned out delicious!
- 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, plus additional for dusting pan (preferably Dutch process)
- 2 1⁄2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1⁄4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1⁄4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, more to taste (optional)
- 1⁄2 cup butter, softened,plus additional for greasing pan
- 1⁄2 cup peanut oil or 1⁄2 cup canola oil
- 1 3⁄4 cups sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1⁄2 cup milk, mixed with
- 1⁄2 teaspoon vinegar (or 1/2 cup sour milk or buttermilk)
- 2 1⁄2 cups finely shredded zucchini, drained and juice squeezed out (5-6 small zucchini)
- 3 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2 cups coarsely chopped pecans, more to taste
- unsweetened whipped cream or very lightly sweetened whipped cream, as accompaniment (optional)
- Preheat oven to 325degF.
- Grease a 9"x13" baking pan (preferably glass), and dust generously with cocoa powder, tapping out excess.
- Sift together the cocoa powder, flour, baking soda, salt, cloves, and cinnamon, and optional nutmeg, and set aside.
- Cream together the butter, oil, and sugar until fluffy, add eggs, vanilla, and sour milk, and blend well by hand.
- Add drained and squeezed grated zucchini, and stir in well.
- Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared pan.
- Sprinkle the top evenly with chocolate chips, leaving a chip-free 1" diameter area right in the center, and then sprinkle evenly with chopped pecans.
- Bake for about 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- (Thats what the chip-free spot is for. You will never get a clean toothpick otherwise; it will always be chocolate covered.) If you are using a metal pan, bake at 350degF for 40 minutes.
- Allow to cool to room temperature in pan sitting on wire rack.
- If desired, serve with a dollop of very lightly sweetened whipped cream.
- Refrigerate or freeze leftover cake; this cake is very moist and will mold if left for long at room temperature, but it won't get stale!
Great rich cake! Will definitely be a repeat at my house. Used peanut oil, and it added a wonderful flavor. Didn't bother dusting the pan with cocoa and served as is with no whipped cream. Added the cocoa/flour mixture with the zucchini. I love Penzeys and use their spices and cocoa exclusively, it's all wonderful. Thanks for sharing the recipe!
The combination of chocolate and spices make this an outstanding snack cake. I didn't have buttermilk on hand so used the vinegar and 2% milk. The only thing I will do differently next time is not dust with cocoa ... there was too much cocoa that wouldn't shake out and occasionally a piece would be bitter from excess cocoa. Definitely a keeper and one I will be making on a regular basis.
Chocolate cake with hidden veg...just what i need to fool my kids...and it did, they loved the chocolate-eeness, it was dense and rich and they ate it all without knowing that there was courgettes in it! A definate keeper - thank you!