Thursday, May 3, 2012

Birthdays and marrows

Since I've been the main gardener for the last 6 weeks or so, things have gone to ruin.  Or seed.  Some things have even died.  What is one day a little marrow,  just a bit too small to pick, seemed to turn into a bommy-knocker overnight.  That's the boys' term for it, and as you can see, it can pack a punch:

The boys turned 7 and 5 in the last week, and of course that means a bit of baking.  It also means Joshua will be off to school on Monday, but that's a whole different post...

So to kill two birds with one stone yesterday, I baked my favourite courgette cake. I originally found the recipe here, but have made so many changes that I'll put it up here.  As you can see, it doesn't look very green and nobody even has to know there's a vegetable in there if they don't need to :)  It's a nice dense cake and is best just slightly undercooked so it doesn't dry out.

2 c self-raising flour
2/3 c cocoa
1 tsp salt
just over 1/2 c oil (I use rice bran oil)
2 c brown sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla flavour
2 c grated courgettes* 

(*Peeled too if they're marrows. Grate and put in a colander.  Sprinkle with salt and let it sit for a while, rinse and wring dry in clean tea towel. If you don't do this, the cake might be too moist and will need to bake for much longer than 50 min.)

Combine oil, sugar, eggs, vanilla and courgettes in a large bowl. Sift flour, cocoa and salt over wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Bake in large cake tin in 180 C oven for 40-50 min. 

Ice with ganache made with 200g chocolate and 100ml cream.  If the ganache is too runny, let it cool down a bit before icing. 

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