I have to admit, my garden is taking a toll on me. After a delayed planting season due to the cool, damp spring and then complaining most of the summer that I had nothing to eat from my garden, I am now inundated with produce! Every morning when I look out my kitchen windows I see more bright red and yellow tomatoes to pick, more Japanese and classic eggplant hanging from the branches, and... who knows what I'll find lurking behind those giant zucchini leaves! It's been hard to keep up.
All of a sudden I'm overwhelmed, and somewhat exhausted, by my little garden. I've found myself thinking often of my mother's huge vegetable garden and how she managed and mastered the bushel baskets full of produce every day throughout the summer -- I don't come close. I have devoted this week to tomatoes; peeling, seeding, and chopping. I have made fresh salsa several times, since it doesn't stick around for very long. (Really, is there anything better than scrambled eggs topped with fresh tomato salsa (?) -- also a good way to use up my many jalapêno peppers.) I've also been making the base for my favorite Tomato Risotto to freeze for the upcoming winter. Eating this risotto on a snowy, below zero day puts a smile on everyone's faces.
But I find all of that chopping tiresome. What I love doing most in my kitchen is baking and yesterday I did just that -- with zucchini from my garden. I made zucchini muffins with the addition of coconut and baked them in miniature popover tins. The shape reminds me of the chocolate bouchons sold throughout Paris!
I had Cream of Coconut in my refrigerator, leftover from the Tropical Carrot Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting I recently made and added that to the muffins and the icing, along with finely-shredded, unsweetened, organic coconut.
And if you don't have zucchini from your own vegetable garden, I suggest picking some up at the market. This recipe's a keeper.
Zucchini & Coconut Iced Muffins
adapted recipe from King Arthur Flour
• 2 large eggs
• 1/3 cup honey
• 1/2 cup canola oil
• 1/3 cup brown sugar
• 1 tablespoon Cream of Coconut
• 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
• 1 cup white whole wheat flour
• 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
• 2 cups grated, unpeeled zucchini
• 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut, finely shredded if possible
• 1 cup powdered (confectioners') sugar
• 2 tablespoons Cream of Coconut
• pinch of salt
• 1/4 cup shredded coconut, toasted
2. Lightly grease a 12-cup muffin pan or miniature popover pan. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, honey, oil, sugar, and Cream of Coconut.
4. Add the dry ingredients and mix until combined; stir in the grated zucchini and the coconut.
5. Fill the popover or muffin cups about two-thirds full. (I had a small amount of batter remaining when using the miniature popover pans.)
6. Place pan on the middle rack of the preheated oven and bake for 24 to 30 minutes, or until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
7. Remove from the oven and transfer muffins to a cooling rack.
To Make the Icing:
1. Combine the powdered sugar, Cream of Coconut, and salt and whisk until smooth. The icing should be a drizzling consistency. Adjust ingredients if necessary.
2. Pour icing by the spoonful over the muffins. Sprinkle with toasted coconut.
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