Category: zucchini


I like football. This is surprising because I generally hate watching sports on teevee. I don’t know if its the tight-ends or the hairless arms, but football is a-okay in my books. Every Sunday, we dress baby Otis in his football onesie and have football family time. My friends love a good ol’ fashioned food competition, so I thought, why not host a soup competition for superbowl. Get it, Soup-erbowl. Turns out I’m not that genius and grantland hosted the king of all head-to-head souperbowl competitions online days after I had sent out my invite.

Superbowl custom dictates chili eating, so I decided to forgo the opportunity for soup supremacy and take myself out of the running by making a venison chili with skillet cornbread. I used up some of my black beans (thus continuing to fulfill my new years resolution) and used some fantastic Deer Valley venison from the Brickworks market. I wanted to be on theme, so I made Brooklyn based Baked’s tomato soup cupcakes with mascarpone icing. The batter was a horrifying shade of orange from two whole cans of tomato soup,  the finished cupcakes were…Mmmm wow…unexpected…moist, spicy, tomatoey – genius!

Our friends are so impressive – almost everyone brought soup, with garnishes! Fancypantses. There was a creamy cold “tailgate” vichyssoise with croutons and a perfectly soft boiled egg from Ferran Adria’s new home-cooking book, a parsnip soup with toasted mustard seeds and parsnip chips, and a 101 cookbooks cheddar broccoli soup with crispy croutons.  We each tried the soups and had a secret ballot drawing at half-time – the winner by a landslide was the “tailgate” vichyssoise, oh and that creepy slackline dancer.

Skillet Cornbread (makes one skillet)

1 cup All-Purpose flour
1 cup old cheddar
1 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

1) Preheat oven to 400F. Grease seasoned cast-iron with shortening.
2) Combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, cheddar and salt in a bowl.
3)Combine wet ingredients and add to dry ingredients until just combined.
4) Place empty cast-iron pan in heated oven for 5 minutes.
5) Remove and pour batter into pan.
6) Bake for 25 minutes, let stand 15 minutes before serving.

*I like to top cornbread when it comes out of the oven with a maple syrup butter  sometimes. You know, to gild the lily.

a little help from the little guy

bumper crop & punk rock bakeries

I have only one zucchini plant in my backyard. One is enough. Mammoth zucchini appear overnight, forcing me to use them at a pace that I would never voluntarily eat zucchini at. I made a delicious zucchini relish earlier in the Summer, we have been grilling it and eating it ribboned in salads.

This past week, inspired by an amazing bakery I visited in Chicago, I made zucchini cupcakes. The bakery, Bleeding Heart Bakery, was everything a bakery should be, fun, quirky, delicious and hot-pink!

zucchini explosion.
At the bakery I had a wonderful peach cupcake topped with tiny corn kernels. Very tasty. 
I loved the wire whisk light fixtures, tin roof and hot pink walls. 

I think my favourite zucchini application so far is the spiced zucchini cupcake. Any cupcake iced with cream cheese, candied walnuts and crystallized zucchini is okay by me.
I thought the cupcakes needed some colour on top, so I candied finely julienned zucchini skin. 
Zucchini Spice Cupcakes with Candied Walnut & Zucchini