Dash of Class: Zucchini meets cupcakes for a taste triumph

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Recipe Roundup

By Nora Sweat

For Recipe Roundup this month, I have a variety of recipes.

Zucchi­ni probably is growing in your garden or you can buy them at the Hardin County Farmers Market. I usually make 12 double batches of zucchini bread, but when I saw the cupcake recipe, I thought I would try them.

The zucchini adds moistness to the products and it is a good way to add a green vegetable to your plate.

Several years ago, there was a Canadian couple living in Elizabethtown that I met at the Hardin County Schools Performing Arts Center. One of the first reci­pes the wife gave me was Nanaimo Bars.
The one in my column is from the province of British Columbia. But it has roots in the province of Alberta.

Nora Sweat, author of  Mama and Me is a native of Hardin County and a retired home economics/family and consumer science teacher. She can be reached at norasweat@thenewsenterprise.comor by mail at 408 W. Dixie Ave., Elizabethtown, KY 42701.


Zucchini Cupcakes
      1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)
      1 cup packed dark-brown sugar
      2 teaspoons baking powder
      1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
      1/2 teaspoon salt
      1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans or walnuts
      1 zucchini (10 ounces), coarsely grated (1 1/2 cups)
      1/3 cup vegetable oil
      2 large eggs, lightly beaten
      1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
      Cream Cheese Frosting

      Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cups of a standard (12-cup) muffin tin with paper or foil liners. Set aside.

      In a medium bowl, mix together flour, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Mix in nuts.

      In another bowl, combine zucchini, oil, eggs, and vanilla; add to flour mixture, and mix just until combined (do not over mix).

      Divide batter evenly among cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of a  cupcake comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes.

      Cool in tin on a wire rack for 10 minutes; turn cupcakes out, right side up, and cool  completely.

      Make your favorite cream cheese frosting or choose a readymade cream cheese frosting. Using an offset spatula or butter knife, spread frosting on cupcakes. The frosted cupcakes are best eaten within 1 day.

Source: Martha Stewart Living, 2014

Calgary Nanaimo Bars
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup baking cocoa
3/4 cup butter, cubed
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup flaked coconut
1/2 cup chopped almonds, optional

2 cups confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons instant vanilla pudding mix
1/4 cup butter, melted
3 tablespoons 2 percent milk

3 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 tablespoon butter

Line an 8-in.-square baking pan with foil, letting ends extend oversides by 1 in. In a large heavy saucepan, combine sugar and cocoa;add butter. Cook and stir over medium-low heat until butter ismelted. Whisk a small amount of hot mixture into eggs. Return all to the pan, whisking constantly. Cook and stir until mixture reaches160 degrees on a candy thermometer. Remove from heat. Stir in the graham cracker crumbs, the coconut and, if desired, almonds. Press intoprepared pan. Refrigerate 30 minutes or until set.

For filling, in a small bowl, beat confectioners' sugar, pudding mix,butter and milk until smooth; spread over crust.

In a microwave oven, melt chocolate and butter; stir until smooth. Spreadover top. Refrigerate until set. Using foil, lift bars out of pan.Discard foil; cut into bars. Yield: 3-1/2 dozen.

Taste of Home 2014

Ginger Ale Pound Cake
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
3 cups all purpose flour
2 sticks butter
5 eggs
2 ½ cups sugar
3/4 cup ginger ale
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 teaspoons lemon flavoring

Generously grease pan with shortening and dust with flour. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and shortening until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time. Mix in sugar.

Alternating between the two, add flour and ginger ale. Then add salt, vanilla and lemon flavorings. Continue beating for five minutes. Pour mixture into pan and bake for 90 minutes at 325.  (Don’t open oven door while baking.)

Remove cake and set on a wire rack until cooled, 15-20 minutes. Put a plate on top of the open side of the pan and flip it outside down.