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Well after a long wet reprieve it sure felt good to get my hands dirty and some productive work done on the farm.  Wednesday evening we had a fine crew show up, we turned up the ground and sowed more lettuce, spinach, and arugala.  Carrots and beets were thinned in field two, as were the zucchini which were quite epic in size.  Brenda kindly dropped off beets and zucchini to Meals on Wheels, and zucchini keep producing, just keep picking.  On Saturday we need to thin rutabagas, they should a name a car “the Rutabaga”, arrrruuugahhhhhh! 

A little birdie told me we will be picking garlic today and doing some braid work. Beans are also ready for picking so bring your sunscreen, mosquito spray, energy and smiles : D 

see you out there,

Elvira : D 

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

adapted from Saveur

serves 8-10

2 medium zucchini, trimmed and grated (I grated mine on the medium holes of a box grater)
9 tablespoons of unsalted butter, at room temperature, divided
2-3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa, sifted
1-1/4 teaspoon baking soda 
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk *
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar

*if you don’t have buttermilk on hand, which I frequently do not, simply add 1/2 tablespoon vinegar to 1/2 cup milk (whole or lowfat) and let sit for 15 minutes. Works.

Working in batches, put a small mound of the grated zucchini in center of a large square of double-layer cheesecloth (I used a thin tea towel).  Gather corners together and squeeze out as much water as possible from the zucchini.  Transfer zucchini to a bowl and set aside.  (I had about 2 cups of this squeezed zucchini. Do not obsess about the amount, though.  This is a very forgiving recipe when it comes to the amount of zucchini.)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.  Butter a deep 9″ cake pan with 1 tablespoon of the butter. Sift flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt together into a mixing bowl and set aside.

Beat together the remaining 8 tablespoons of butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy, 3-4 minutes.  Add oil, beating well. Beat in one egg at a time, add vanilla, reduce speed to low and beat in flour mixture and buttermilk in 3 alternative batches.  Stir in reserved zucchini.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 minutes (Start checking after 1 hour – baking time could be faster.)  Remove from oven and set aside to cool for 15 minutes.  Invert onto a rack to cook completely. Dust with confectioners’ sugar.

The Italian Dish

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