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Courgette Chocolate Cake

Triple chocolate courgette cake is reminiscent of a brownie because it’s so rich and moist. Buttery chocolate frosting, dark cocoa powder batter, and extra chocolate chips make this a rare indulgence.


Courgette chocolate cake with chocolate frosting and glasses of milk

All my fellow gardeners can relate to having overly-prolific zucchini plants; it’s a thin line between having enough courgettes for family meals and an overwhelming abundance of summer squash! One moment, you are patiently overseeing the growth of a tiny courgette, and before you know it, giant squashes have invaded your whole garden.


We had to come up with different, creative ways of enjoying them during the summer: freshly-grilled on the BBQ, long ribbon strips for salads, or as crispy fritters. Given the abundance, I need to distribute them freely among friends and family, as well as sneak them into numerous meals (pasta sauces, quiche, soup, relishes). Despite this, I cannot keep up with my garden’s bounty – thankfully I can rely ony my food processor and sous-vide machine! When my family refuses to eat anymore courgettes, I grate vast quantities to vacuum seal and freeze for winter meals.


In southern Quebec, during heavy snowfalls and subarctic temperatures, the first day of spring feels like a distant dream. Life is too short and winter is too long for a healthy chocolate zucchini cake, which is why I recommend this decadent alternative – you got to treat yourself! I use frozen, grated courgettes to make the dessert extra moist and and to bulk up the batter. Cold, harsh weather calls for a self-indulgent recipe and this courgette chocolate cake delivers. It is delicious as is, but if you’re feeling adventurous, I added a quick chocolate frosting to seal the deal.


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Yields: 20 portions


ingredients for courgette chocolate cake: grated zucchini, flour, butter, cocoa powder, sugar, eggs, vanilla

Ingredients:

Courgette Chocolate Cake

115g butter, room temperature

100g vegetable oil

350g sugar

Splash vanilla

5g baking powder

2g sea salt

2 eggs, room temperature

115g buttermilk (or substitute with 100g milk and 15g rice vinegar)*

300g all-purpose flour**

10g espresso powder

380g grated courgette (if using frozen, let it thaw overnight and then place it in a sieve to exclude the excess liquid)

Chocolate Frosting

200g butter

7g vanilla extract

200g icing sugar


Directions:

Chocolate Courgette Cake

  1. Butter and line a 9”x13” baking pan with parchment paper.

  2. Preheat oven to 325°F.

  3. Whisk flour, cocoa powder and espresso powder in a medium bowl.

  4. In the stand-up mixer bowl, weigh the butter, oil, sugar, vanilla, baking powder, and salt.

  5. Beat on medium-high until light and fluffy.

  6. Reduce to low speed and add eggs, one at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl using a marise between the addition of each egg.

  7. Add the buttermilk and dry ingredients, alternating a couple of times between the two.

  8. Add the grated courgette and dark chocolate chips.

  9. Mix on low speed, remove from mixer and finish folding in the ingredients using the marise .

  10. Pour batter into a prepared baking pan, smooth out the top and bake for approximately 30 minutes.

Easy Chocolate Frosting

  1. In the stand-up mixer bowl, weigh the butter, cocoa powder, and vanilla.

  2. Beat on medium-high until light and fluffy.

  3. Reduce to low speed and add the icing sugar.

  4. Return to high speed until light and fluffy.

  5. Sometimes I add a splash of cream or milk to help loosen it up if my home is very cold.

Montage

  1. Once the cake has cooled to room temp, flip it onto a plater or board.

  2. Peel off the parchment paper and add the frosting.

  3. Smooth it out using a straight icing spatula.

  4. I like to make sure it is spread evenly all over and then go back and make a wave pattern.

Slice of courgette chocolate cake with a fork and spatula covered in chocolate icing

Substitutions

I have had success baking this cake with:

*non-dairy milk, simply substitute one-to-one with oat or nut milk

** gluten-free 1 to 1 flour mixes

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