Sunday, September 6, 2009

Zucchini-Cranberry Bread

I have had a zucchini sitting on my counter for a couple weeks now, and when I stumbled across this recipe on Culinary Concoctions by Peabody and just knew what to do with that zucchini! This bread is amazing! The best zucchini bread I have ever had! I loved the cranberries- I had no idea they would add so much! I am not the most amazing cook, but I am learning what a difference some things can make. Particularly, I have found that citrus zest can completely transform a recipe! It took this one up a whole notch! It was delicious! If you have a zucchini that is just crying out to be transformed into something tasty- give this one a try!

Zucchini-Cranberry Bread
3 eggs, at room temperature
1 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup mascarpone cheese (I used cream cheese)
2 tsp vanilla extract
zest of one orange (I used a lemon)
2 cups granulated sugar
2 cups grated zucchini (I don't peel it- I love the green color and you can't taste it.)
3 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 heaping cup dried unsweetened cranberries (soaked in hot water for 10 minutes, rinsed, pated dry) (I just used Crasins)

Preheat oven to 350F.
Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat together the eggs, oil, mascarpone cheese, vanilla, zest, and sugar. Beat until mixtures turns a pale yellow, about 3 minutes.

Add zucchini and mix until incorporated.

Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Mix until incorporated but don’t over mix, treat this like you would muffins.

Fold in cranberries.

I used 4 super mini loaves (they are super tiny, only like 3 inches in length) and two mini loaves. You can also use 2 standard sized loaf pans. Spray with baking spray or grease and flour.

Bake for 30 minutes for super mini, 45 for mini, and for 1 hour for standard size. As always, check by using a knife or wooden skewer to test for done-ness.

Remove from oven. Let cool on wire rack for 15 minutes. Remove from loaf pans and continue to let cool on wire rack. Glaze if desired.

Adapted from my Mom.
Cranberry-Orange Glaze
1/3 cup jelled cranberry sauce
juice of a large orange
½ cup powdered sugar, sifted

Mix together with a whisk. Pour or brush on bread.
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