This is my kind of veggie smuggling – in a cake! You can’t see the zucchini (because chocolate,) you can’t taste the zucchini (because chocolate) but the zucchini is totally there, so I figure that it counts for at least one of your five a day!
The texture of this cake is lovely and light, and it’s stand alone tasty all on it’s own. Of course, if you want to take this cake to a whole new and very decadent level, then top it off with that chocolate ganache.
This goes great with a cuppa, makes a delicious dessert and freezes fabulously so you can have your cake and eat it whenever you fancy!
350g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1 teaspoon salt
500g zucchini , grated
¾ cup (180ml) olive oil (not extra virgin)
250g caster sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
50g chopped walnuts, chopped
100g dark chocolate chips
FOR THE GANACHE (optional)
200g dark chocolate, chopped
100ml thickened cream
- Preheat oven to 180 C / 160 C fan-forced.) Grease and line the base of a deep round 23cm cake pan with baking paper.
- Sift together, combine the flour, cocoa powder, mixed spice and salt in a large bowl. Add zucchini and toss to coat.
- In another bowl, combine the oil, sugar, eggs and vanilla essence. Add the wet ingredients and stir until just combined. Fold in the walnuts and choc chips.
- Spoon batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 50 – 55 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into centre comes out clean.
- Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- Meanwhile, to make the ganache, place the chocolate in a bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan on low, until just simmering. Pour the hot cream over chocolate and stir until melted and smooth. Stand the ganache for 15 minutes, until thickened slightly. Spread the ganache over top of cake and then cut into wedges and serve.
Preparation time: 10 minutes plus standing Cooking time: 50-55 minutes
TIPS! Zucchini can hold a lot of water, which can affect the finished texture of the cake. If the grated zucchini seems super watery, simply squeeze out some of the liquid, then add the zucchini to the cake mixture. I grated the zucchini in the food processor so it didn’t get too soggy. The water content of the zucchini can also affect the baking time of the cake, so return it to the oven for another 10 minutes if it needs it – simply test with a skewer that comes out clean.
Don’t use Extra Virgin Olive Oil because a) it’s expensive and b) it has a strong flavour which can overpower the cake.