Zucchini-Olive Oil Cake with Lemon Crunch Glaze—a slightly long name for what is essentially a simple Bundt cake—was this week's Sunday Slow Bakers selection. It was selected by Jan who writes the blog "Keep your Feet in the Street," a fellow blogger with similar interests who has a blog title as long as my own. But this zucchini cake's title has us both beat, it's 8 words long and, more importantly, at least 8 times better than any zucchini bread recipe that I've ever made.
Is is the sweet lemony glaze or the moist and flavorful interior of the cake that makes it so delicious? I'm not sure, but I love this cake. It is just the sort of vegetable-embracing, olive-oil-using cake that everyone should make more often. I plan to.
To start off, it is a forgiving recipe. It reminds me of my favorite carrot cake recipe where you can forget to leave out a minor ingredient or run short of something and it never fails to turn out great. I suspect that this is the case with the zucchini cake because I ran short of walnuts so I threw in some hazelnuts and then I completely forgot to toast them, and don't think my cake suffered one bit. I bet you could even get creative with the recipe and add different spices or some citrus zest instead of one of the spices, and you would get equally delicious, if slightly different, results. I really like that in a recipe. It's often the sort of thing that makes me want to make it again and again.
And at the height of zucchini season this summer, we may all want to make it again and again. The cake calls for 2 1/2 cups of grated zucchini or 2 small zucchini. My zucchini must be a little on the small size because it took 3 of them to get 2 1/2 cups and now that I know what size produces this amount, I won't need to measure next time.
I'd like to think that adding a bunch of zucchini to a cake makes it healthy. Well, it's still cake, the main ingredients are still flour and sugar. But it doesn't hurt that zucchini is low in calories and high in vitamin C as well as a number of other vitamins and minerals.
If you wanted to cut down on the sugar, you could leave out the glaze which has a cup and a third of sugar. The cake is delicious enough on it's own that it doesn't need the glaze. But somehow I can't imagine willingly giving up one of my favorite aspects of this cake. I think there is a reason that Gina specifically mentions the glaze in the name of the recipe. It is, literally, the icing on the cake. So, if my favorite cake during the winter is gingerbread, then this is my new favorite cake for summer. I've always been a fan of zucchini, but now I am looking forward to zucchini season with a new intensity. And if your garden has a glut of zucchini, you really must make this recipe or perhaps send a few of them my way...