Monday, August 30, 2010

upstate adventure: zucchini bread

This weekend we went on a last-minute getaway (which if you ask me, is the best kind). We picked a spot within a 3-hour driving radius, Googled a bed & breakfast, and set off for our one-night adventure.

We found our lovely B&B in the countryside of North Stonington, CT and couldn't have made a better choice. It was a horse farm! With hens! And a farm house from the 1700's... and about 100-acres of property to explore. Turns out we were the only guests for the weekend so we settled into our room upstairs and got ready for dinner.

We spent the rest of the evening exploring Stonington, had delicious mexican food at Milagro, and treated ourselves to a Dairy Queen mini-blizzard on the way home (new favorite flavor: banana split). I swear we're not a 60 year old married couple (shoot, we're not even married), but we spent the rest of the night cuddled up reading our books... and we went to bed at like 10pm! It was chilly with our bedroom windows open and all you could hear was crickets for miles - perfect sleeping weather.

We woke up on Sunday the best way possible: tucked deep in thick white sheets to the smell of something baking in the oven and bacon crackling on the stove. We padded downstairs and our host, Peter, had a spread ready. I drank coffee and bf read the paper while we gobbled up melon and blueberries and just-out-of-the-oven zucchini bread with fresh cherry preserves. The next treat was scrambled eggs from the farm, thick-cut bacon and a buttery english muffin. I couldn't have been more happily full so we took an after-breakfast stroll around the property to walk it off.

We showered in the claw-foot tub and checked out to head to a nearby winery for an afternoon tasting. 8 tastes and 1 full glass of Jonathan Edwards Zinfandel later, we were nibbling baguette and local "Bridgid's Abbey" cheese on their patio overlooking the grapes (I could have stayed all day).

It was a wonderful weekend - I love New England! - and other than the absolute peace we felt waking up in the country, I couldn't stop thinking about that zucchini bread! Here's a recipe I found to mimic it - I just need a recipe for cherry preserves... does anyone have one they love?

Now if only this bread can induce that peaceful feeling...

Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread with Cinnamon (and dark chocolate)

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 eggs
1/3 cup canola oil
3/4 cup plain yogurt
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups finely grated zucchini
(4 oz. dark chocolate, chunked)

Preheat oven to 350 F. Oil a 9x4 inch loaf pan and line with parchment paper. Line a 6-cup muffin tin with paper cups.

In a bowl, sift together dry ingredients and set aside.

In a large bowl, beat eggs until foamy; beat in eggs, yogurt, buttermilk, oil, sugar, and vanilla. Combine well. Stir in grated zucchini and chopped chocolate.

Fold flour mixture into the wet ingredients and stir until combined.

Spoon batter into loaf pan and muffin tins. Bake for approximately 50 minutes. Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes in the pan. Loosen sides and remove from pan. Cool completely before serving.


Joanne said...

This sounds like the perfect getaway! B+Bs like this are perfect for romantic weekends. At least to those of us who think that local eggs are romantic. Yeah, I'm one of those.

This zucchini bread sounds fantastic! I love as much cinnamon as I can get!

Pilar Mustafa said...

Always loving to hate you and your fabulousness. So glad you guys had a great time. Move here so you can bake for me :) Hearts

Beth said...

Joanne - Romantic weekends are sometimes a must, and a non-creepy B&B is my dream!

Pilar - No hate, just love :)

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