Appalachian Food

Making Cakes and Pies with Zucchini

chocolate zucchini cake

Over the weekend I tried a new zucchini cake recipe. The cake is chocolate and it calls for vanilla or chocolate frosting—I went with the chocolate.

The recipe can be found here if you’re interested in trying it. It was very very good.

Over the years I’ve made quite a few baked zucchini goods. You can re-visit the ones I’ve posted about below.

This week we:

  • did our first greenbean canning of the season
  • picked blackberries for juice
  • froze 3 cups of shredded zucchini
  • made a run of pepper jelly
  • made bread and butter pickles
  • made squash/zucchini pickles
  • continued with the steps for the 14 day pickles we have going
  • enjoyed squash, peppers, zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, spinach, cilantro, basil, beans, and lettuce from our garden and corn from Farmer Tim’s garden down the road


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  • Reply
    July 22, 2020 at 1:43 pm

    Gosh Tipper, you have been busy. I love Zucchini Bread. I believe I’m the only one in my family who does like it. More for me. Right? Ha! Ha! I share with my mother and father in law and my sister in law.

  • Reply
    July 21, 2020 at 5:19 pm

    Wow you’ve been busy, Tipper! I planted two kinds of summer squash this year, and the plants are BIG but no squash yet. I hope I didn’t leave the plants too close together – they got such a slow start I didn’t think they would all make it so I figured I’d let Nature and the insects do the thinning. And there has been some insect damage, but my gosh, the plants look hearty! If I walk in amongst them I can’t see my legs. Do you think as long as the plants look healthy they will produce even if they are maybe closer together than they ought to be? I guess I’ll never know all I need to know about gardening!

    • Reply
      July 21, 2020 at 6:38 pm

      Quinn-I always plant mine too close together! Its hard to envision or remember those large plants when you’re planting those tiny seeds 🙂 I don’t think it hinders production for them to be close. Mine took a while to produce I’m betting yours will be putting out squash before you know it!

      • Reply
        July 22, 2020 at 11:06 am

        Oh thank you! I hope you’re right 🙂

  • Reply
    Leslie Haynie
    July 20, 2020 at 8:51 pm

    I’ve been tempted to make some zucchini pineapple that I just read about. Going to look up the okay recipe now.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    July 20, 2020 at 11:34 am

    I have enjoyed cabbage, cucumbers, onions, jalapenos, bell pepper and green beans so far. My corn is a few days out and my tomatoes may be a couple of weeks away. I got so busy with fencing in my garden and digging a ditch to control the drainage that I forgot about squash. Luckily a neighbor gave me four big crooknecks. He don’t know much about gardening and I thought he had let them go to seed but decided to try them anyhow. I sliced them about 1/4 inches thick and rolled them in cornmeal seasoned with salt and pepper and fried them in bacon grease. They turned out just fine. Each of them was enough for me to eat for two days.

    Dusty’s mother in law came to his house and planted a little garden as surprise for them. He called the other day to ask me about his squash. He said it had been blooming but he hadn’t seen any squash forming. That day he was pulling some weeds around it and noticed some big black oblong things growing on the vines. He wanted to know if I knew what they were. I could only think of eggplant and zucchini that might match his description. “Can you send me a picture?” It was zucchini! I felt bad that I had raised a 27 year old son that didn’t even know what a zucchini looked like in the wild.

  • Reply
    July 20, 2020 at 11:01 am

    Interesting to find yet one more recipe that includes zucchini. In years past I remember all those gigantic zucchini trying to compete for my time during harvest season. I hate to admit, but many times they either became too large or fell by the wayside due to limited time. Now after all these years of gathering recipes and harvesting too much zucchini, I am at a loss. No more zucchini, because garden has decreased in size, and the zucchini takes up a lot of room.

    Meanwhile, I must share some of my ideas. In zucchini bread I always substitute a portion of chopped up apple, and it give it such a wonderful taste. Picky grandson even took some to school and shared with friends. It has been wonderful with my new zoodle maker to turn the zucchini into a tasty substitute for spaghetti noodles. There is a YouTube channel called Whippoorwill Hollow that makes an old timey traditional side dish in that region they call “Okay” That dish sounds to be right up your alley, Tipper. I tried it, and I now plan to have this on a regular basis. It was a way to use up odds and ends from the garden, and it has everything near and dear to an Appalachian heart including frying, cornmeal, and garden odds and ends. Last but not least with the new craze since Covid to preserve food for future use, I have pulled out my old dehydrator and have already preserved a mountain of kale powder. Not certain I can use it for anything else because my variety is too extensive with not a bounty of any one thing. Maybe a good neighbor will throw a zucchini my way. “Waste not want not” comes to mind as I remember my long counter laden with too much zucchini, and I regret not dehydrating then for Winter cooking.

  • Reply
    July 20, 2020 at 9:19 am

    The cake looks delicious! I have a recipe for Zucchini Brownies that a friend gave me which is so much better than the boxed kind you buy and make from the store. I have shredded 8 cups of zucchini and put in freezer as neighbors keep giving them to me. My yellow squash has been producing well and I am eating it about every day. I love yellow squash. Also enjoying cucumbers fresh from the garden, basil, chives and oregano. Oh and I love my little tommy toe yellow tomatoes. I have red too but the yellow are sweet. Looks like you have accomplished a great deal from your garden. Enjoy!

  • Reply
    July 20, 2020 at 9:00 am

    Thanks for sharing. That recipe was exactly what I was looking for. Already printed it. I have tried a lot of new dishes trying to use my zucchini. The kids love it breaded in Panko, seasoned with garlic salt and fried. I made an Italian dish called Skillet Zucchini Chicken Lasagna I found on Pillsbury’s website that was delicious.

  • Reply
    Margie Goldstein
    July 20, 2020 at 8:39 am

    Zucchini is delicious and so versatile! It adds moisture and sometimes texture. I use zucchini spirals for a twist on spaghetti ( and decrease gluten intake which makes me itchy and scratchy.) The cake looks delicious that you made, Tipper. I will be looking at your zucchini dishes for certain! Your bounty is coming in and I’m so glad you’re getting to enjoy tasting “home.” Blessings to you this day and safety too in the garden!

  • Reply
    July 20, 2020 at 8:23 am

    You have come up with two items I never remember hearing of (pepper jelly and zucchini cake). Are these common in your neck of the woods ?

    • Reply
      July 20, 2020 at 10:56 am

      JK-yes they are common here 🙂 You can see the pepper jelly recipe I use here:

    • Reply
      July 20, 2020 at 11:20 am

      The pepper jelly is certainly a keeper. I used Tipper’s recipe to use up my green peppers because I was too impatient to wait for them to turn red. It is great with cream cheese and crackers. On friend mentions it every time I talk to her after I shared a small jar with her once. If I ever have yellow will try it with yellow, as each type of pepper adds a different taste. I bet a Jalapeno would really take it up a notch!

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    July 20, 2020 at 8:08 am

    You all are busy.

    Blackberries gone here. Been canning tomatoes, giving away beans, peas and some corn. Need to pull corn today to freeze. Romas nearly gone.

    I am still drying apples from our one apple tree. No idea what I will do with them all. They have done extra well this year.

    By the way, any of you all know about what I grew up calling ‘artichokes’? They are the tubers of a native sunflower. I have seen them in the grocery years ago but not lately. They were called ‘sunchokes’ there. I have some about 6 feet tall but they are not blooming yet.

    This year is the first year in awhile that I grew squash again. I had had such a buildup of squash bug and squash borer that the plants didn’t last no time. I think not planting them for awhile let the bugs die off, thankfully.

    • Reply
      Ed Ammons
      July 20, 2020 at 11:08 am

      I know what Jerusalem artichokes are. We had them in abundance up on Wiggins Creek when I was a kid. We knew they were edible but never tried to eat them. They were more or less weeds to us.

  • Reply
    harry adams
    July 20, 2020 at 7:28 am

    I am not sure I want zucchini cake. Probably as good as carrot and probably can’t tell zucchini is in it, but just tell me it is chocolate cake. My wife made zucchini muffins and bread this week. She added black walnuts to them. A muffin and cup of coffee is breakfast.
    Your summation of what is being picked is like us at the dinner table counting how many items came from the garden. So far this year we have only had 11. The record is 17. No tomatoes, beans, or corn yet.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    July 20, 2020 at 6:32 am

    I had corn from Farmer Tim also. It was so good, the first corn of the season, I’ve eaten it every day! Tipper I don’t know how you do everything you do and work full time at the Folk School too, and in addition to all you listed you bought a weeks groceries for your family, Granny , and me…then you delivered them.
    You are amazing!

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