Over a Cup of Coffee: Chocolate Zucchini Sheet Cake

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Diane Prather

Chocolate Zucchini Sheet Cake

For the cake:

■ 2 cups sugar

■ 1 teaspoon soda

■ 1 cup vegetable oil

■ 1/4 teaspoon baking powder

■ 3 eggs

■ 1/4 teaspoon salt

■ 2 1/2 cups flour

■ 1/2 cup milk

■ 1/4 cup cocoa

■ 2 cups shredded zucchini

■ 1 tablespoon vanilla

For the frosting:

■ 1/2 cup margarine

■ 6 tablespoons evaporated milk

■ 1/4 cup cocoa

■ 4 cups powdered sugar

■ 1 tablespoon vanilla

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease a jelly roll pan. Shred 2 cups of zucchini and set aside. Combine sugar and oil. Add eggs, one at a time, beating the batter after each addition. Combine dry ingredients and add to the egg mixture a little at a time, alternating with the milk. Stir in the shredded zucchini and vanilla. Pour into the jelly roll pan. Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes or until cake tests done. To make the frosting, mix the margarine, cocoa and milk together in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat. Stir in the powdered sugar and vanilla. Stir until smooth. Pour hot frosting over the hot cake.

This week’s column begins with a cooking tip from my sister Charlotte Allum, of Fort Collins. The other day, she made some pumpkin muffins with a cream cheese filling. She covered the spoon “good” with cooking spray before making a little hole in the batter for the filling. The spoon didn’t stick to the batter! Thanks for the tip, Char!

Also, I had a call from a reader concerning the “Ground Beef and Vegetable Soup” from the Aug. 10, 2013, Saturday Morning Press. The reader wanted to know if the cocktail vegetable juice called for in the recipe was the same as V-8. I think that it is — at least that’s what I used. The reader said he thought the soup was pretty “tomatoey” so he added a little milk. I thought that was quite a bit of juice to put in the soup, too, but it tasted fine.

The thing that’s so great about recipes is that you can experiment until you make the recipes your own. For this recipe, you might add more water, use less juice, etc.

This week’s recipe is another using zucchini. I think the recipe might have come from my stepmother, Mary Osborn, who made lots of zucchini recipes. I think I have made it before. I have so many recipes for zucchini cakes, bars, cookies and breads that it’s hard to keep track.

I have another recipe for a chocolate sheet cake (without zucchini) that I really like. It’s very similar to this one. I use a 9x13-inch casserole pan to make it, instead of a jelly pan, and I’ll bet that would work for this week’s recipe, too, but you’ll have to let the cake bake a little longer (test it).

Notice that there are 4 cups of powdered sugar in this frosting recipe, enough to make a lot of icing. You might want to cut the frosting recipe in half.

Do you have recipes that you would like to share with readers? How about recipes that will help us use summer produce? Call me at 970-824-8809, or write to me at P.O. Box 415, Craig, CO 81626.

Copyright Diane Prather, 2013

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