Sweet Corn Cakes with Tarragon and Cheese

Last week at the farmer's market I bought the last of the season's sweet corn. It was a bittersweet day, sweet corn season is one of my absolute favorites. But what to do with these last precious ears of corn? I decided that instead of grilling them up and throwing into my weekly meal prep that I would try something different and bake with them. I had seen this recipe for sweet corn cakes in the Ottolenghi cookbook Nopi a while back and thought they sounded so yummy, but would really want to use fresh, in season sweet corn to try it out. Well, this was my last chance so I dove right in. 

I only bought a couple ears of corn so had to make half the recipe, but that works out okay for me since I'm the only one at home. I did end up altering the spices and flavoring a little bit based on my preferences and what I had at home. I have no doubt the recipe as written is amazing, but my little changes worked well for me and I thought the end product turned out amazing! The smell of these little cakes baking was absolutely wonderful, cheesy, buttery and herb-y! A fitting end to the sweet corn season for another year.  

Since I made these to eat for breakfast instead of as a side to a meal I decided to use a little less onion and garlic. And while I did alter some of the spices I think that the tarragon is a must! A unique but wonderful flavor. Sadly I didn't have any feta which would have been amazing, but did have some local raclette style cheese from the farmer's market that I knew would be delicious so used that instead. Thanks to Hickory Knoll Farm for the wonderful cheese; it was perfect! Cheesy, sweet, savory and incredibly tender. The texture is very moist and almost souffle-like. For something a little different than the traditional corn muffin, give these little corn cakes a try and be ready to be amazed! This is really truly "corn bread". 

 
 

Sweet Corn Cakes with Tarragon and Cheese
Adapted from Nopi by Yotam Ottolenghi
Ingredients

  • 2 ears corn
  • 1 tablespoon minced red onion
  • 1/2 small clove garlic
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground sumac
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground coriander
  • Fresh tarragon
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons (1 1/4 ounces) melted butter
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Black pepper
  • 1 egg, separated
  • 1 tablespoon whole wheat flour
  • Raclette, feta or another favorite cheese

Directions
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease the 6 muffin tins very well with butter and line with squares of baking parchment, buttering the parchment as well. 

Lay the corn cobs flat on a cutting board and use a large sharp knife to shave off the kernels – you should have about 250 grams total (I used 2 large ears and I had quite a bit more than 250 grams, I only ended up using about 3/4 of the kernels). 

Discard the cob and transfer the kernels to a food processor, along with the onion and garlic. Pulse for 3–4 seconds, until the mixture is roughly processed but has not turned to a wet purée

Add the fennel seeds, cumin, coriander, sumac, tarragon, baking powder, butter and egg yolk, along with 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt and a very good grind of black pepper. Blitz a few more times, to combine – some of the corn kernels will still be whole – then transfer to a medium bowl. Fold the flour in by hand and set aside

Place the egg white in a separate small bowl and whisk to form firm peaks. Fold a third of the whites gently into the corn mixture. Once it has incorporated, continue with the next third and then the next

Once fully incorporated, divide the mixture between the muffin tin and insert a chunk of cheese into the center of each. Push it halfway down the corn mixture – the cakes will puff up around the cheese when they cook

Bake for 25–30 minutes, until the cakes have risen and are golden and fluffy. Remove from the oven and set aside for 10 minutes before lifting them out of the tray

Pretty in Pink Chocolate Birthday Cake

It was my birthday yesterday!! Unfortunately, Lara had to work so we couldn't spend the entire day celebrating our birthday like we wanted to. :) This did mean however, that I had plenty of time to spend on my favorite project, birthday cake!! I baked the cake on Friday and froze the layers overnight. Yesterday morning I whipped up a batch of Swiss meringue buttercream to frost the cake with and then decorated it with macarons from my local (and totally amazing) macaron shop that is right down the street (I know, how lucky is that?), and flowers from the flower shop just a few more buildings over. The combination of gorgeous pink dahlias and the corresponding macarons is stunning. I was so pleased with how it all turned out, certainly my favorite cake that I've made to date!

I looked at what felt like a gazillion chocolate cake recipes before settling on one. I went with Rose Levy Beranbaum's All American Chocolate Butter Cake. From the start, this was the recipe I was leaning to, she did literally write the Bible on cake after all, but I had to research for a while before finally deciding. Although I have a chocolate cake recipe that I've made several other times before that I just love, that recipe uses oil as the fat and for this cake I really wanted to go with butter instead. There is just something about butter in a chocolate cake that makes me happy, and it tastes so good. I'm so glad I went this route.

The cake turned out absolutely delicious. It was not a super high-riser as cakes go, but it baked up very nicely without too much of a domed top making it easier for me to frost. I just made 2 layers, but I think adding a third layer next time would be amazing. It is a delicate and tender cake, dense yet moist, and did I mention, it's nice and buttery! So, so, so delicious. I will be making this one again!

For the frosting I went with a basic Swiss meringue buttercream because you can't really go wrong with that! Because I decided to decorate it with real flowers and macarons I left the frosting simple. I smoothed it out evenly all over the cake and left it at that. I wanted to decorations to really shine. 

 

After looking at a lot of different cakes I knew I wanted to decorate with real flowers. I think it is the best and most beautiful way to decorate a cake. Nothing I can ever do with frosting is going to come close to competing with God's beautiful creation, so why try and compete with that? I walked down the street to my local flower shop and just picked out what spoke to me. I couldn't pass up the gorgeous local dahlias, they were just stunning.

I then headed a few doors down to grab a few macarons to finish out the decorations. (FYI I love my local macaron shop, Le Bon Macaron, they have the absolute BEST macarons, and their shop is absolutely adorable. I highly recommend them to anyone!) I knew they would add a different element and more interest (plus more deliciousness) to the cake. I picked out three different flavors totally based on their colors, just wanted them to go with the flowers I had picked. In the end it all came together beautifully in the finished cake. So much fun to put together! I would really love another excuse to make cake again, soon...! 

Happy Birthday Lara!! I wouldn't choose anyone else to share a birthday with! Even though you had to work, I'm glad we still had plenty of time to celebrate (and eat cake!)!! 

 

All-American Chocolate Butter Cake
Adapted from The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum
Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup + 3 tablespoons (2.25 ounces) natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup (8.25 ounces) boiling water
  • 3 whole eggs (5.25 ounces)
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups + 2 tablespoons (8.25 ounces) all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups (10.5 ounces) sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature

Directions
Whisk together the boiling water and cocoa powder until smooth, and cool to room temperature. In another bowl, combine the eggs, ¼ of the cocoa mixture, and vanilla.

In the bowl of your stand mixer, combine the remaining dry ingredients and mix on low speed with the paddle attachment to blend. Add the butter and the remaining cocoa mixture and mix on low speed until the ingredients are moistened. Increase to medium to medium-high speed and beat for 1 ½ minutes to aerate. Scrape down the sides and gradually add the egg mixture.

Pour into two prepared 9” cake pans (lined with parchment paper, buttered and floured) and bake at 350 degrees F for 25-35 minutes or until a toothpick or knife inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

Cool on wire racks in the pans for 10 minutes then release onto wire racks. Store tightly wrapped with plastic wrap at room temperature for 2 days, 5 days refrigerated, or 2 months frozen.


Swiss Meringue Buttercream
From Style Sweet California
Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (125 grams) egg whites (from about 3 to 4 large eggs)
  • 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks – 340 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cubed
  • 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ vanilla bean, seeds scraped out (optional)

Directions
Whisk together the sugar and egg whites:  In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, add the egg whites and granulated sugar.  Whisk them together briefly by hand, just until they are combined so that the egg whites don’t begin cooking by themselves.

Create a double-boiler:  Fill a sauce pan with a few inches of water and bring to a simmer.  Place the mixer bowl with the egg white mixture on top to create a double-boiler. The water should be kept at a simmer but should not touch the bottom of the bowl.  The double-boiler acts as indirect heat for the egg white mixture. 

Heat the egg white mixture:  Occasionally stirring, heat the egg white mixture until it reaches 155 to 160 degrees F on a candy thermometer.  The mixture should be very hot to the touch and the sugar should have dissolved. 

Make the meringue:  Once the egg white mixture is hot, carefully return the bowl to the stand mixer.  Fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the mixture on high speed for about 8 minutes.  When done, the meringue should hold shiny, medium-stiff peaks and be cooled to room temperature.  Stop the mixer and swap out the whisk for the paddle attachment.

Add the butter:  With the mixer on low, begin adding in the butter a couple tablespoons at a time.  Use the paddle attachment to mix it in.  The butter must be room temperature in order to incorporate properly with the meringue.

Add the vanilla:  Once the butter has been mixed in, add the vanilla bean seeds (if using) and the vanilla extract.

Mix until smooth:  Turn the mixer up to medium speed and mix until silky smooth.  This may take a few minutes, but centime to mix until light, creamy, and free from most air bubbles.

Note: Yields approximately 3 1/2 cups - enough to nicely frost an 8-inch double layer cake, but without any leftover for decorating with. 

Zucchini Slice with Bacon Sausage

We're going to continue on the zucchini theme for a little while yet. I for one am not yet ready to embrace all things pumpkin and spice. The trees are still green, the sun is still warm, and most importantly, it's still summer! I'm going to hang on to every last second as long as I can. Today I have for you another somewhat different way to use up some zucchini you might have hanging around; it's my take on the zucchini slice, something I'd never heard of before I stumbled across it over at The Clever Carrot. Apparently it's an Australian thing, but other than that I know nothing about it. If someone out there would like to enlighten me feel free! 

I thought the recipe looked intriguing, full of zucchini and eggs with a relatively little amount of flour, like a cross between a savory quick bread and a frittata. And that's really how it turned out! I'd say the texture was more like a frittata, but a little less egg-y due to the flour. It'd be a great thing to have on hand for a quick and filling breakfast, or a light lunch. Easy to whip together and open to endless variations. A fun late summer project, and a great way to use up some zucchini and eat well all at the same time!

The original recipe called for some bacon, but when I went to the butcher, my eye's were drawn to a new sausage that was in the case, bacon sausage!! I thought this would be a fun place to try it so I went with the sausage instead of the actual bacon. I also added some red pepper along with the onion and topped it with a wonderful dry sheep's milk cheese that I picked up at the farmer's market last week. Feta would be a wonderful substitute, or creamy goat cheese for that matter. I also used 100% whole wheat flour in mine, which is probably why my slice does not look as beautiful and light as the pictures at The Clever Carrot looked, but don't let that stop you from trying out this fun recipe. 

 
 

Zucchini Slice with Bacon Sausage
Adapted from The Clever Carrot
Ingredients

  • 3 cups grated zucchini, well drained
  • 1/4 medium red onion, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
  • 1 bacon sausage, or alternatively 3 slices of bacon
  • 5 eggs
  • 2-3 tablespoons bacon fat
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • Crumbled sheep or goat's milk cheese

Directions
Preheat your oven to 350 F.Line an 8x8 square pan with parchment paper for easy removal. Coat with cooking spray (even when lined with parchment, the eggs can sometimes stick).

Using a box grater, shred the zucchini. Line a bowl with a clean kitchen towel and place the zucchini inside. Twist it up to close, and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Set the zucchini aside until ready to use.

In a large non-stick skillet, sauté the onion and red pepper until softened and just starting to take on some color, 10-15 minutes. 

Meanwhile, crack the eggs into a large bowl. Add the bacon fat. Season with black pepper and whisk well to combine. Toss in the sautéed onion and pepper, and the reserved zucchini. Crumble in the cooked bacon sausage (or bacon).  Mix well to combine everything. 

To the bowl, add the flour and baking powder. Continue to mix until it looks like pancake batter. Pour into your lined baking pan. Sprinkle the sheep or goat cheese over the top.

Bake until the filling is set, about 40-50 minutes. The top and bottom should be deep golden brown. Rotate the pan halfway through cooking time for even browning.

Remove from the oven and cool for at least 10 minutes before slicing.

Gratin of Zucchini, Rice and Corn with Cheese

I was browsing through my Instagram feed earlier last week when I came across a photo for a zucchini rice casserole that for whatever reason just called to me. I went online to find the recipe and was happy to see that it was a very simple and a very healthy recipe. So when I went to the farmer's market on Saturday I picked up two large zucchini so I could whip this dish up over the weekend. I am a huge zucchini fan and usually end up just slicing it up into rounds or spears and grilling it. I liked that this dish gave me something else that I could do with zucchini if I am feeling ambitious. Not that it's a difficult dish by any means, but it's slightly more involved than slicing and grilling!

Of course, I couldn't leave the recipe alone so I decided to add my own twist and add in some freshly picked sweet corn that I also picked up at the farmer's market. I think zucchini + corn is one of the best late summer combos so I couldn't pass it up. I think it was a brilliant addition to the gratin! The tender zucchini mixed with the juicy and sweet corn is fantastic along with some salty parmesan and a couple little pats of butter. Fresh, healthy and delicious, this is a great late-summer winner!

On the blog where I got the recipe she used brown rice in this gratin as opposed to the white rice which is what the original recipe that she used called for. I went with the brown rice as well and parboiled it for 8 minutes as she said. I found that in the finished dish the rice was not quite tender so I would recommend upping the length of the parboil to 10-12 minutes, or alternatively, baking the casserole longer overall. I ended up baking it for 35 minutes and there was still quite a bit of liquid left over when I dug in. This extra liquid did not detract from the delicious flavors, but if you are looking for a finished product with less moisture I would bake it longer and/or add less liquid prior to baking.

 
 

Gratin of Zucchini, Rice and Corn with Cheese
Adapted from Sprouted Kitchen
Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 pounds zucchini or other summer squash
  • 2 ears corn
  • 1/2 cup short grain brown rice 
  • 1/2 onion, sliced thin
  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons whole wheat flour
  • about 2 1/2 cups warm zucchini juices
  • 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese 
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions
Shred the zucchini in a food processor or with a box grater, toss with a heaping teaspoon of salt and drain in a colander. Reserving the juices. Meanwhile drop the rice into boiling salted water, bring rapidly back to a boil for 10-12 minutes; drain and set aside. Preheat the oven to 400'.

Cut the kernels off of the ears of corn. In a large oven-proof frying pan melt 1 tablespoon of the butter. Add the corn, salt and pepper and cook over medium high heat until starting to brown. Remove corn from pan and set aside. 

Return the frying pan to heat. Add the 2 tablespoon olive oil and cook the onions with a little salt for 15-20 minutes, or longer, until tender and translucent and starting to brown. Stir in the grated and dried zucchini and the garlic. Let sit without stirring for a few minutes to start browning some of the zucchini. Then, toss for about 5 minutes until the zucchini is almost tender. Add the corn back to the pan. Sprinkle in the flour, stir over moderate heat for a minute and remove from the heat. 

Gradually stir in the 2-2 1/2 cups warm liquid (zucchini juices). Put the pan over moderately high heat and bring to a simmer, stirring. Remove from the heat again, stir in the blanched rice, 1/2 cup of the grated parmesan and 1 tablespoon butter. Taste carefully for seasoning and add more salt and pepper if needed. 

Transfer frying pan to oven. Bake until the gratin is bubbling, top is browned and appears most of the liquid has absorbed, approximately 35-40 minutes, sprinkling with additional parmesan in the last 5 minutes if desired.

Tomato and Asiago Pizza

August is almost gone, can you believe it? I sure can't. This summer just FLEW by! One of my favorite parts about August is how amazing the farmers market is this time of year. Tomatoes, peaches, melon, corn, squash, peppers and the first of the apples, wow is it glorious. I have been eating good! 

There's almost nothing better than a simple, homemade pizza to showcase some of that summer bounty. This pizza only needed a couple ingredients to help it shine. Start with a good crust, add some garlicky oil, top with a couple handfuls of whole milk mozzarella mixed with a bit of asiago, top with a couple slices of one of those juicy, sweet and tender August tomatoes and sprinkled with thyme. A quick trip to the oven and you're ready to go. Serve with a bit of fresh parley and Parmesan cheese and you are set for dinner.

You could kind of consider this a spin on the traditional Margarita pizza, just switching up the cheese a bit and using a different herb, so not really a Margarita pizza at all! But in the same spirit in my opinion! Whatever you all it, it's delicious!

 
 
 
 
 
 

Tomato and Asiago Pizza

  • 1/4 of the perfect pizza dough recipe
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 tomato, sliced thin
  • Asiago cheese, shredded
  • Parmesan cheese, grated
  • Fresh Thyme
  • Fresh parsley, for garnish

Directions
Heat a small frying pan over medium to low heat. Add the oil and allow it to heat up for 30 seconds, then add the sliced garlic. Fry the garlic in the oil until it is just starting to turn golden, watching it closely to ensure that it does not burn. Remove pan from heat and set aside to cool. 

Prepare pizza dough. Brush shaped dough liberally with the garlic oil, you may not need it all, save the leftover oil to use later on. Sprinkle the oiled dough with a few tablespoons of parmesan cheese. Then top with asiago cheese, spreading almost to the very edge. Lay tomato slices on top of the cheeses. Sprinkle the whole thing with minced fresh thyme and some salt and pepper. Slide pizza off peel and onto your heated stone or baking sheet. Bake until the crust is golden and and cheese is bubbling and just beginning to brown, 6-10 minutes depending on your oven. 

Vanilla Sablé

When I went to the Netherlands earlier this year I loved the fact that every cup of coffee I ordered (and let's just say there were a LOT of them!) came with some kind of cookie on the side. Just a small little sweet bite to complement the dark, roasted flavor of coffee. Having been raised in a Dutch American home, I was already quite accustomed to "coffee-time" at home always having accompanying cookie of some sort (windmill cookies were always the go-to) , but seeing the same principle in action in everyday Dutch life was simply wonderful. After getting back from Europe I was inspired to whip together a couple batches of coffee-time cookies for myself. This vanilla sablé recipe was one of the cookies I happened to try out and it turned out to be an amazing choice. It was a fitting choice after my trip to the Netherlands and France; a French cookie to go along with my Dutch cookie culture inspiration! 

These cookies may look simple and humble but they are absolutely delicious! Super easy to make with just a few simple and basic ingredients, but the end result is heavenly. They are rich yet crisp and light, and melt-in-your-mouth buttery. If you have some good butter to spare, this is the place to use it and really let it shine. A perfect cookie to stand alongside a cup of strong dark coffee. 

The recipe I used for these cookies originally called for lemon and lime zest to make citrus sablé, but this time I just wanted something super simple and classic and so I flavored mine with just a little vanilla (vanilla bean would also be amazing if you have one). I also made a few little adjustments in order to not be left with 1/2 and egg. As far as I can tell these adjustments did not end up harming the final cookie one bit. Another great thing about these cookies is that you can make the dough ahead, and shape it into a long and then freeze the log of dough for up to a couple months before thawing and baking. I love finding ways I can work ahead and make life easier for myself in the future. 

 
 
 
 
 
 

Vanilla Sablé
Adapted from Joy the Baker
Ingredients

  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (15 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg, separated
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (130 grams) flour
  • Turbinado sugar, for decorating

Directions
Working in a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium speed until it is smooth and very creamy.  Add the sugars and salt to the butter and continue to beat until smooth and velvety, not fluffy and airy, about 1 minute. Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in the egg yolk until well blended.

Turn off the mixer, pour in the flour and mix on low speed just until the flour disappears into the dough and the dough looks uniformly moist. If you still have some flour on the bottom of the bowl, stop mixing and use a rubber spatula to work the rest of it into the dough. (The dough will not come together in a ball — and it shouldn’t. You want to work the dough as little as possible. What you’re aiming for is a soft, moist, clumpy dough. When pinched, it should feel a little like Play-Doh.)

Scrape the dough onto a work surface and gather it into a ball. Shape into a smooth log about 9 inches long (it’s easiest to work on a piece of plastic wrap and use the plastic to help form the log). Wrap the log well and chill for at least 2 hours. The dough may be kept in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.

When ready to bake, center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper and keep it at the ready.

To decorate the edges of the sables, whisk the egg white until smooth. Place chilled log of dough on a piece of waxed paper and brush it with the white, and then sprinkle the entire surface of the log with turbinado sugar. Trim the ends of the roll if they are ragged and slice the log into 1/3-inch-thick cookies (I got around 18 cookies). May chill the dough again at this point if desired, or proceed directly on to baking. 

Place the rounds on the baking sheet, leaving an inch of space between each cookie, and bake for 17 to 20 minutes (mine went the whole 20), rotating the baking sheet at the halfway point. When properly baked, the cookies will be light brown on the bottom, lightly golden around the edges and pale on top. Let the cookies rest 1 or 2 minutes before carefully lifting them onto a cooling rack with a wide metal spatula. Repeat with the remaining log of dough. 

Baked Lentil Falafel

Quick. Easy. Healthy. Delicious. Those are all words I like to hear, especially when it comes to prepping meals for a busy week at work. These baked lentil falafel fit the bill perfectly. Now, I know, since they're baked, not fried, and made out of lentils, not chickpeas or fava beans, they really aren't falafel. But humor me here. It's the easiest way to describe these little patties. They have a little heat from a jalapeno, some spice with the cumin and coriander, and freshness from the herbs.  Throw it all in the food processor,  and process away! Shape, bake, eat, repeat. It's that easy! 

The original recipe for these little bites was just 5 or so ingredients long. A great base recipe from which you can improvise to your hearts content. I added a few extra flavorings because I couldn't help myself, but you can keep it simple if you like. I used my favorite seasonings of cumin and coriander, along with cilantro, parsley and mint. Probably my favorite combination of flavors, but try adding your own favorite spices and see what happens. I ate mine the first day on a chickpea flour wrap with garlicky kale and tahini. Yum! But I've also made sandwiches, topped salads, and dipped these little guys into yogurt for a quick snack. Go ahead, try something new!

 
 

 

Baked Lentil Falafel
Adapted from Pinch of Yum
Ingredients

  • 2 cups (320-340 grams) cooked lentils*
  • 1 cup cilantro
  • 1 cup parsley
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint (optional)
  • half a jalapeño, leave the ribs and seeds if you like it spicy
  • 1 green onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1-1½ tablespoons olive oil
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • a squeeze of lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon coriander
  • 1-2 tablespoons whole wheat flour

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Pulse all ingredients except flour in a food processor until combined. Stir in the flour - just one tablespoon at a time, until it's just dry enough to handle. Form into 10 or so patties and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove sheet from the oven and carefully flip each patty over. Return to oven for another 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Use however you would like; in salads, sandwiches, wraps, bowls, etc. They also freeze great, so you can whip up a batch and keep on hand for  a quick meal any time. 

*I was using up the rest of the lentils I had in the pantry. The dry weight was 140 grams which ended up being 340 grams cooked. When I weighed out 2 cups it was 320 grams, but I only had an additional 20 grams of lentils so I just threw them in too! So it doesn't need to be exact. 

Zucchini Greek Yogurt Muffins

It's that time of year again, zucchini season. The summer squash are exploding from every stand at the farmer's market, dark green, light green, yellow. Every year I hear people groaning about their excess of summer squash but to be honest I've never felt like I had too much of this mild vegetable. I honestly think I could eat grilled zucchini all day, every day of August. It is so good. A little olive oil, a pinch or two of salt, +/- some chili powder or smoked paprika, I never get tired of this simple preparation. And then there's summer squash's sweeter side, the magic of zucchini bread and muffins. 

I whipped up these muffins last weekend to keep in my freezer all week, easy to pull out for a mid-morning snack or to tide me over in the late afternoon before dinner. They ended up being the perfect choice. Nothing flashy, mildly flavored, not overly sweet. A true snack. Each one is on the smaller side, good for a quick bite when you need something fast! 

These muffins are full of wholesome ingredients, the zucchini obviously, whole grain oats,  whole wheat flour, and Greek yogurt. Naturally sweetened for the most part with a little honey (plus just a bit of brown sugar), and lightly spiced with cinnamon. They may not win any beauty contests, but they will give you something tasty and nutritions to sink your teeth into when that craving strikes. 

 
 

Greek Yogurt Zucchini Muffins
Adapted from Running with Spoons
Ingredients

  • 1 cup (120 g) whole wheat or spelt flour
  • 1 cup (80 g) old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup (225 g) plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup (80g) honey
  • 2 tbsp (25 g) brown sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (115 g) shredded zucchini, squeezed of excess liquid

Directions
Preheat your oven to 350F (176C) and prepare a muffin pan by lining the cavities with paper liners or greasing them with oil or cooking spray. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, oats, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, beat the egg until it becomes slightly frothy. Whisk in the yogurt, honey, sugar, and vanilla, mixing until well combined. Fold in the shredded zucchini.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, mixing gently until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips, if using.

Divide the batter evenly among the 12 muffin cups, filling them almost to the top.

Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until the tops of the muffins begin to turn golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Allow the muffins to cool in the pan for ~15 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely. Store them in an airtight container 

Yields: 12 small muffins