August 31, 2009

Zucchini Brownies

Raised eyebrows. A stifled laugh. Finally vocalized: "you're putting a green vegetable into a chocolate dessert?"

It's zucchini season. Anyone who has a zucchini plant in their backyard knows that you don't get just one or two vegetables off of a plant - you get an armload. You can only eat so many grilled zucchini side dishes, and zucchini parmesan starts to get old fast too... Someone with an abundance of zucchini was probably trying to think of places to hide the green squash and figured that dark, delicious (?) chocolate brownies might provide a good disguise. 

Side note, before your sweet tooth is visits heaven: zucchinis are a pretty good food to squeeze into your day. A quick google search revealed that this fruit (we're insisting on calling it a vegetable) is a good source of vitamin C, and is high in folate, potassium, manganese, and vitamin A. 
Healthy brownies?... that might be a stretch. 

We found the recipe on AllRecipes.

1/2 cup vegetable oil
1  1/2 cups white sugar
2 teasons vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1  1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups shredded zucchini

(The recipe also calls for walnuts, but we left those out. We searched cupboards high and low, but we just didn't have any.)

Press the batter into a greased and floured 9x13 pan and bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes. 

After folding the zucchini into the chocolate-y batter, we realized we probably should have peeled the zucchini: there were dark green splotches throughout the otherwise brown concoction. Too late! 
Good news: apparently the rind is loaded with beta-carotene. 
The green seemed to be less noticeable after baking anyway.

Now for the icing. This stuff was weird. 

1/4 cup margarine
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups confectioner's sugar
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Melt the margarine and cocoa powder together, set aside to cool.
Blend the sugar, milk, and vanilla ( vanilla). Stir it into the cocoa mixture. 

Sounds simple - but - this is the weirdest icing we've ever seen. It wasn't a liquid - it was crumbly! Once the brownies cooled, we literally had to press the icing on. Much to our surprise, it worked!