Mocha Zucchini Muffins

First things first, Happy Easter!

Christ the Lord is risen today.
All creation join to say. 
Raise you joys and triumphs high.
Sing ye heaven and earth reply. 

Love's redeeming work is done.
Fought the fight, the battle won.
Death in vain forbids him rise.
Christ has opened paradise.

What a glorious day! When I think about all I have in Christ I am continually blown away by what I have been given, not because of anything I have done, I can take credit in no way for my salvation, I believe because God first chose me. How humbling is this truth. 

I this beautiful day, full of celebration and new birth I was inspired to create something new and delicious out of something old. I've had a bag of shredded zucchini floating around in my freezer since last summer. I keep meaning to do something with it, but I always say "next time". Well, not this time! I found a new zucchini muffin recipe, adjusted it for what I wanted, and finished off last years produce, finally! This was the perfect way to do it too. A light and healthy whole grain muffin, lightly sweetened and filled with one of my favorite treats; chocolate covered espresso beans!!

When I saw this recipe I knew I had to make it. I didn't have a go-to zucchini muffin but this one looked promising, and I was right. It's just rich enough to make it special, but not too rich to make it feel overly indulgent. The original recipe calls for a streusel on top which would be marvelous, but I skipped it this time out of laziness, but did chop up a handful of dark chocolate espresso beans for pizzaz. And chocolate. Come on. 

The final product came out as beautiful as I had hoped. Flecked with green from the zucchini, and chocolate from the espresso beans. I added some espresso powder for a little extra mocha flavor, and probably could have added more (I think I'll try 1/2 teaspoon next time!). They turned out light and satisfying. A perfect zucchini muffin. 

 
 


Mocha Zucchini Muffins
Adapted from The Almond Eater
Ingredients

  • 1 cup (120 grams) whole wheat flour
  • 1-2 tablespoons (12-25 grams) brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) olive oil
  • 1/4 cup (2 ounces) milk
  • 2 tablespoons (37 grams) maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup grated zucchini
  • 1/4 cup chocolate covered espresso beans, roughly chopped

Directions
Preheat oven to 350°. Line a muffin tin with muffin liners, set aside

Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and espresso powder in a bowl and set aside.

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg and then add olive oil, milk, syrup and vanilla. Add this mixture to the dry ingredients. Add the zucchini, and stir until combined. 

Transfer the batter to the prepared muffin tin. Bake in preheated oven for 18-20 minutes. Remove from oven, wait a few minutes for the muffins to cool before removing them from the tin.

Yields: 6 muffins

Simple Mocha Snack Cake

I'm of the opinion that simple is almost always best. This is true in every aspect of my life, but where it especially rings true is with food. I don't need fancy meals or outrageous desserts, all I ever want is  high quality ingredients put together in such a way as truly make something magical. It's amazing what you can do with only a few things, as long as these ingredients are high in flavor and pair well together. 

This chocolate cake is an example of such simple pleasures. The recipe may not look like anything special, but it's put together perfectly to result in a simple yet satisfying chocolate cake. It's a very light cake, but full of flavor and the perfect afternoon snack or simple dessert, exactly what I love. 

There's no actual chocolate, and very little cocoa, in this cake, so I didn't feel as though I could call it a chocolate cake. However, add a little espresso powder and you've got yourself a delightful mocha cake. Sprinkled with powdered sugar, or topped with some macerated berries, it's a wonderful little cake. 

Simple Mocha Cake

Adapted from 

Drizzle and Dip

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 125 grams (1/2 cup) sugar
  • 60 grams butter, room temperature
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 70 grams (1/2 cup) flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Put the first 3 ingredients (the cocoa powder, sugar, milk and espresso powder) into a small pot and bring it to the boil and allow to cool.

Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt in a small bowl and set aside. 

With an electric mixer cream the butter and sugar until pale. Add the egg yolks one at a time ensuring they are well mixed before the next addition, then add the vanilla. Add the cooled cocoa mixture and beat until well combined and lightened in color.

Add the flour mixture to the batter alternating with the milk, beating until just combined after each addition.

Beat the egg whites until stiff and fold gently into the cake by hand. Transfer batter to an 8-inch greased cake pan and bake for 25 – 30 minutes until springy to the touch. Allow to cool and then remove from the pan. Dust with powdered sugar and serve.