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Thursday, August 2, 2012

Lemon Zucchini Rosemary Bread

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I've mentioned before that two days a week Ryan drops me off about 6 miles from home and I ride my bike the rest of the way, while he turns around and heads to class. A few weeks ago, we went through our usual Thursday routine and it wasn't until I'd started biking and he had long since driven away that something felt wrong. It wasn't a leaking tire or an issue with my brakes. I'd forgotten to put my helmet on!

Needless to say, the ride home was an adventure. I felt as though every car that passed was judging me for my unsafe riding and probably pointing me out to their children in the backseat, citing my bad example. I cringed each time I came across another man or woman on a bike, thinking of how I "tsk tsk" the bikers without helmets that I often see. Now I was one of them. Aside from my guilt and shame, there was the actual danger of the situation. I hate to say it, but St. Louis drivers are not the most friendly when it comes to cyclists. Each time I bike home I already feel like I'm encountering one or two accidents with a driver (Mom, Grandma, you didn't read that!), and I felt all the more exposed and vulnerable without a helmet on!

Thankfully I made it home safe and sound, albeit a bit more slowly and carefully than I usually am. My reward? A hefty slice of this lemon zucchini rosemary bread! I was all set to make my favorite healthified zucchini bread when I decided to Google zucchini rosemary bread and came across this lovely recipe. I healthified this a bit, reducing the sugar and adding some whole-wheat flour, and found another great zucchini quick bread! This is a bit more sophisticated, with its lemon and rosemary undertones. It's definitely still on the sweeter side, but not so much that it feels criminal to eat a slice for breakfast! I made mini loaves and found that they cooked perfectly through--no gummy insides, but nowhere near dried out. If you don't have mini loaf pans, the original recipe is made in two regular sized (9 x 4 inch) loaf pans.

In short, wear your bike helmet. Make this zucchini bread.

One Year Ago: Lentil Burgers with Tzatziki
Two Years Ago: Strawberry and Mandarin Orange Salad

Lemon Zucchini Rosemary Bread
slightly adapted from Simply Recipes 

-1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
-1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (could instead use 3 cups all purpose flour)
-2 tsp baking soda
-1/2 tsp baking powder
-2 tbsp minced fresh rosemary
-2 eggs
-1/2 cup melted unsalted butter
-1/4 cup olive oil
-1/2 tsp salt
-1 cup sugar
-1 tbsp lemon zest
-3 cups grated zucchini

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray 4 mini loaf pans (or two 4x9-inch pans) with cooking spray and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together flours, baking soda, baking powder, rosemary, and salt.
3. In a mixing bowl, beat eggs until frothy. Beat in sugar. Add butter and olive oil, beating to combine. Stir in lemon zest and shredded zucchini.
4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, a third at a time, stirring just until incorporated.
5. Divide batter evenly between prepared pans. Bake for 25-30 min for mini loaf pans, or 45-50 min for regular loaf pans (start checking at 20 and 40 minutes, respectively). Bread is fully baked when an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
6. Remove loaves from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for 5 min before removing from pans to cool on rack completely.