Thursday, September 1, 2011

chocolate, vegetable, miracle

I know what you're thinking: "Zucchini (or courgette as some folks say) and chocolate?  Lilrevchef, you must be confused.  Zucchini: that's a vegetable.  Therefore, it has no place with chocolate!" (Did anyone see The Next Food Network Star this season?  Chocolate-dipped asparagus made an appearance. *shudder*)

I hear ya, people.  But when my friend Emily mentioned baking chocolate chip cookies with zucchini in them, I was intrigued.  Zucchini chocolate chip cookies.  Hmm.  That's just a hop, skip and a jump away from sweet zucchini bread, right?  The recipe is originally from Barbara Kingsolver's book Animal, Vegetable, Mineral and you can find it here.   I'll walk you through it, though, with plenty of pictures for you people who are as visual as I am.

You need to finely grate a zucchini, until you have a cup.  I'm going to be honest with you: it doesn't look lovely.  It actually gets a bit gooey and slimy (words you may prefer not to hear in a cookie recipe).  But, trust me, it makes super moist, soft cookies.  And you don't taste the zucchini a bit.

Start with a big bowl and beat one egg (room temperature for baking).

Add in 1 stick (4 oz) of butter, also softened at room temperature.

Add in 1/2 cup light brown sugar and 1/3 cup of honey.

Lastly, add 1 tablespoon of vanilla.

Whisk together until everything's incorporated.

Grab a second (smaller) bowl and put 1/2 cup white flour and 1/2 cup whole wheat flour.

Add 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 tsp nutmeg.  Use a fork to blend it all together.

Add the flour mixture to the liquid mixture and mix well.

Toss in that 1 cup of grated zucchini/courgette and 12 ounces of chocolate chips, stirring together.

Drop spoonfuls onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet and flatten a bit on top.  Bake in a preheated 350ºF/176ºC for 20 minutes.  Barbara's recipe says 10-15 minutes, but mine took 20.  So, of course, adjust as needed for your oven.  They don't get a lot of color on them, but will just begin to brown at the edges.

It made 3 dozen cookies for me (though the recipe says only 2).
Let cool on a cookie rack.

They're SO tasty.  And I like to think good for you (at least better than regular cookies).  You certainly see the zucchini in them (which I don't mind) but you don't taste it.

The zucchini gives these cookies a moist, cakey texture and the hint of cinnamon and nutmeg adds an interesting depth.  And the chocolate, well, it does its thing and makes them divine.  Who knew veggies and chocolate got along so well?  Though, I don't think I'll be making chocolate asparagus anytime soon!

Bon appetit!

1 comment:

  1. A little additional advice folks:

    I think it would've been a good idea to peel the zucchini so that the green wasn't so obvious. Also, I found that after just a day or so kept in an airtight container, they became very sticky. I would perhaps add more flour to the dough when making these, maybe 1 1/4 total. Interesting cookies, for sure! I need to post my old standby chocolate chip cookie recipe sometime. Though this recipe makes me want to add a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg to my old one. And that's the fun of it all...reinventing old recipes and finding something even better.