Just when you thought the zucchini and summer squash recipes were over for the season…
Out comes one more zucchini recipe!
Yes, I’m kind of in a zucchini rut. But there’s just so much of it, and it’s so versatile. Already this summer I’ve made a quinoa-stuffed patty pan squash and a delicious zucchini dip. I also made a zucchini ribbon salad. And that’s just in 2014. Search through the archives, and there’s even more zucchini goodness.
The way I figured it, it was about time for a dessert recipe around here. Thing is, I haven’t made all that many desserts lately. Most days, we don’t have dessert, or we simply enjoy a piece of fruit. No really big reason for it – I just haven’t craved much in the way of sweet treats. But the zucchini was staring at me in the fridge, lonely and starting to go south. I had a few hours before I was to meet up with friends to watch my soccer team play (I’m almost ready to be back playing myself – been a long hiatus with my hip surgery), so I figured this was an excellent time to make a dessert. I’d have someone to help me eat it!
It seems there is never a shortage of helpers in that regard – I show up with food, and people are more than willing to take it off my hands for me. Nevermind that this is a cake with vegetables in it, or even that it’s gluten-free – nobody minded that one bit. It’s definitely not a flashy, pretty, fancy birthday cake, but I don’t think that mattered. Sometimes, simple and homestyle is delicious too. With a tender, moist crumb and the tangy cream cheese frosting, I can’t imagine this cake needs to put on such fancy airs. It speaks for itself.
So if you still have zucchini, why not make a cake? No special occasion necessary.
Zucchini Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting (gluten-free)
2/3 c superfine brown rice flour (I like Authentic Foods)
2/3 c gluten-free oat flour (if you can’t find gluten-free oat flour, you can process GF oats in a food processor until finely powdered)
2/3 c tapioca starch
1 T unflavored gelatin
1/2 t baking soda
2 1/4 t baking powder
3/4 t kosher salt
2 t ground cinnamon
1/4 t ground nutmeg
1/4 t ground ginger
1/2 c butter, softened
1 c granulated sugar
3/4 c brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 t vanilla extract
1/3 c Greek yogurt
3 c grated zucchini, packed tightly
For the frosting:
6 oz cream cheese, softened slightly
4 T butter, softened
1/2 t vanilla extract
1 1/2 – 2 c powdered sugar
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 13 X 9 inch glass baking dish and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, gelatin, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars together on medium speed until fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Add the vanilla and Greek yogurt and mix in. Add the flour mixture, about a third at a time, and mix on low speed until everything is blended. Add the zucchini and mix on low speed until everything is mixed evenly.
Spoon the batter into the prepared baking dish and spread out evenly with a spatula as necessary.
Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs still attached. Allow to cool to room temperature.
Meanwhile, make the frosting. Beat the cream cheese and butter together on medium speed until smooth. Add the vanilla and a cup of the powdered sugar and mix in on low speed. If the frosting needs to be more stiff, continue to add powdered sugar, beating on low speed at least until incorporated, and then increasing the speed to medium or medium-high to whip smooth. If your frosting is too stiff, add a tablespoon or two of milk and beat in.
Once the cake is completely cool, spread the frosting over the cake evenly. Slice and serve. Refrigerate the cake, covered, to store.