My mother didn’t bake much when I was a child. In fact the few times that she did break out the measuring cups and pans stand out in my memory along with the warm aroma of cinnamon and the smell of an oven being heated after a long, cold, dormant winter.
However, when she did bake it was special. Hazel’s “chocolate meringue cookies” were among my favorites, along with Grandma Georgine’s “Kahlua Nuts” which always made a boozy appearance around Christmas. These recipes are memorable to me because of their novelty but also because of the respect for tradition and family that they represented; they had stood the test of time and now felt almost like a treasured secret.
I am not sure who Lillian Tisherman was, and I’m not sure my mother knows either. To the best of my knowledge she was a friend of my grandmother’s. Perhaps a member of her church or a member of the local Eastern Star group.
I do know that she made the most delicious zucchini bread. A lofty claim, I know, but when you taste it I’m sure you will agree. It is a little more akin to cake than bread, I would say: a tender crumb, lightly caramelized brown crust, green moist interior, with chunks of dark chocolate. Best served hot, but it is delicious frozen by the slice as well.
- 2 cups grated zucchini
- 3 eggs
- 1½ cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup oil
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2½ cups all purpose flour
- ½ cup whole wheat flour
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp baking powder
- 1 cup dark chocolate chunks/disks (optional)
- 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Grate zucchini into large bowl.
- Add eggs, sugar, oil, and vanilla and whisk to combine.
- Sift in dry ingredients.
- Fold in chocolate and nuts if desired.
- Bake in greased muffin pan for approximately 20 minutes, in a loaf or bundt pan for approximately 40 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.