21 January 2010

Zucchini Spice Cupcakes

Let me begin by reiterating that I absolutely love quick breads and that my all time favorite quick bread is zucchini. Over the last few years I have grown from having a disinterest in zucchini, to not minding zucchini, to downright loving zucchini, especially in quick breads. I have even been seeking out zucchini recipes and have started thinking about growing a garden this spring just to have my very own zucchini in the backyard.

So with that out there, let me just tell you, from one who truly sees herself as a friend of zucchini, that these cupcakes were just s0-s0. The taste wasn't bad, they were very much like a spice cake, but they weren't very moist and if anything they were dense feeling when a cupcake should never be dense feeling. There was a crown to them too, so I know they did some rising, it just wasn't what I expect from a cupcake.

The recipe came from the Martha Stewart but I will admit I made a few changes, maybe the changes made this cupcake sub par but I don't think so, the changes I made were the type of changes I often make (i.e. substituting a little whole wheat flour, adding a little extra cinnamon, canola instead of vegetable oil) with little or no difference in the finished product. And besides, the cupcakes weren't bad, they were just unlike cupcakes to me. Had they been named muffins and had no cream cheese frosting they would perhaps have been fine, but alas then they couldn't have gone into her cupcake book. So here we are.

Zucchini Spice Cupcakes

2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons freshly ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon grated nutmeg )
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup unsweetened applesuace
1 /2 cup canola oil
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
¾ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
2 cups packed light-brown sugar
3 cups packed grated zucchini
1 cup walnuts toasted and coarsely chopped


Preheat oven to 350°F. Line muffin tins with paper liners. Whisk together flours, soda, powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. In separate bowl, combine applesauce, oil, eggs, vanilla and lemon zest until well blended. Stir in brown sugar until smooth followed by zucchini, then add flour mixture and stir until just combined. Stir in walnuts.

Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake until a toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean, about 20-22 minutes. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes. Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature, or frozen up to 2 months, in airtight containers.

I used store bought cream cheese frosting but I think that if I make these again I will definitely go homemade cream cheese frosting.

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