Instead of sneaking onto your neighbor’s porch or into his unlocked car to leave a “gift” of large zucchini, knock on the door and present them with a fresh loaf of zucchini banana bread. They’ll be much more grateful. Granted it doesn’t use up a lot of zucchini but you can grate to your heart’s content and freeze cupfuls to use all winter. It’s great for several kinds of breads, even cookies, and makes a good thickener to add bulk to soups and stews. This year we only seeded two plants and still can’t keep up, despite making zucchini noodles and slicing and chopping it into almost every side dish. Andrew even used a few for target practice. I wish those pocket gophers would develop a taste for giant zucchini instead of tender young peas.
Some grocery stores sell overripe bananas by the bag for as little as 25¢/lb. Keep your eyes open and stock up when you can. Double bag them for your freezer. Frozen bananas can be peeled easily with a knife and cut into slices. Allow them to thaw at room temperature or defrost slices in the microwave before beating them for this recipe. Add pecans or walnuts if you like, but take the time to toast them first in a 350ºF oven for about 15 minutes. Watch closely. Those little buggers can go from toasty to burned in a minute. While you’ve got the oven going you might as well toast a whole bag’s worth and put them in the freezer too. Toasting nuts gives them a rich flavor that enhances anything you put them in. They’ll keep for months in a freezer.
You can peel the zucchini or not (if they’re small), depending on whether or not you want to explain to finicky eaters what those green flecks are in their bread. It only takes a couple of small ones, about 6″ long and 1½-2″ in diameter, to get a couple of cups of grated zucchini. I prefer smaller ones for their more tender texture and better flavor. If you do miss picking for a day and find some monsters, you can still use them if you remove the seeds and peel them. Mini loaves or muffins work well for freezing.
– Joan, 23 August 2017
Zucchini Banana Bread
- 3 eggs
- 1 stick (113 grams) butter, melted
- ½ cup (113 grams) vegetable oil or melted coconut oil
- 1 cup (200 grams) sugar
- 1 cup (136 grams) zucchini, grated
- 3 bananas, well beaten
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 3 cups (420 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1 cup (120 grams) walnuts or pecans, toasted and chopped
Grate the zucchini and set aside. Melt butter (and coconut oil if using that) and set aside. Blend flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar and set aside. Beat bananas well, then add eggs, one at a time. When eggs are all incorporated mix in butter and oil, then grated zucchini. Add dry ingredients, beating just until mixed together. Fold in nuts.
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line mini loaf pans with strips of parchment paper, spraying the uncovered ends of the pan, to prevent sticking. Use paper liners if making muffins. Fill pans (should make 5 mini loaves) and bake in preheated oven for 30-40 minutes, checking for doneness at 30 minutes by inserting a skewer or sharp knife. Regular size muffins will take 20-30 minutes.
Let rest for 5 minutes before turning out of pans. Remove any parchment paper and turn loaves on a side for 15 minutes or so, then turn to other side to finish cooling. Cool completely before wrapping for storage.