Monday, September 01, 2008

Goodbye Summer

It's Labor Day.
Most people around here are at the beach or in backyards, bent over a grill.
There will be hamburgers and hot dogs, potato salad, deviled eggs, little triangles of watermelon.
There are cold cans of beer, the aluminum or the glass wet with droplets from the cooler of ice that held them.

Feet are propped up, aaah...this is the life.
Children are laughing, splashing one another in the pool or in the waves.

Too quickly the heat will diminish; the memories will fade like an old Polaroid.
Thanks, Summer. It has been fun. Can't wait to do it again next year.

I'm not close with my family, my friends are occupied with their own thing, and I'm not currently dating anyone, so no BBQ for me today (sniff).
Several people I work with attended the horse races today, but to be perfectly honest, most of those people aren't ones I choose to associate with unless forced.
Anyway, back to food.
Grilling, I think, isn't a solitary activity, so that wasn't an option today.
Instead, I baked.

I have one Italian squash plant in my mom's backyard, and she has two.
One, incorrectly labeled a summer variety, is actually a winter plant that produces huge pumpkin-shaped and pumpkin-sized globes.
The leaves of this thing are massive, with tendrils reaching out like an alien to take over any surface on land or fence.
It's even crawling up a tree.
It's insane.

That being said, even without the winter variety ripe, we are up to our ears in zucchini.

So I made bread.
This recipe is from The Victory Garden Cookbook, a book that belongs in every kitchen--it's that good.

Lynn's Spicy Zucchini Bread

3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
3 eggs
1+3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1+1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups lightly packed coarsely grated zucchini
1 cup raisins (optional)
3/4 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Sift the dry ingredients together and set aside.
In a large bowel, beat the eggs with the sugar, oil, and vanilla.
Gradually add and beat in the dry ingredients.
Stir in the zucchini, adding raisins and nuts if desired (I used walnuts).
Divide between two greased 9" x 3" loaf pans, and bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for 50 to 60 minutes.



Blogger The Calico Cat said...

When I saw "spicy" I was so hoping to see "dash of cayenne" or something like that...

The recipe is very similar to one that I have been using all summer. (I am in a CSA & so far we have gotten zucchini each week.) The onlt difference is the nutmeg - not so spicy & the optional raisins.
I thought about throwing in some raisins last night...

BTW I make a cocoa version too. (Substitute 1/2 cup of flour with 1/2 cup cocoa powder. The only "real" difference considering that I shake until I am happy when adding the cinnamon & nuts...)

3:14 AM  
Blogger Vallen said...

Oh, I wish you lived closer, you'd be welcome over any time.

2:56 PM  
Blogger Gina E. said...

That sounds delicious Barb - I'm going to print a copy of it right now. Ken and I don't really like zucchini as a vegetable, it's too bland, but add it in baking, and it makes the cake beautifully moist!

8:54 AM  

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