Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A little bit of everything!

Nothing like lounging by the pool and watching your kids and dog swim for a whole day!!

Yesterday was just a really nice day. Usually we have a huge Memorial Day BBQ but this year we decided that T. needed a break. I don't think that I have mentioned this but a couple of weeks ago T. was diagnosed with Epstein-Barr Virus which is just horrible. It actually stays with you for up to 1 1/2 years. He doesn't always feel bad but when he does all he wants to do is sleep and I just couldn't risk him getting too run down by having a big party here! We made the most of it anyway and it was really nice just hanging out with the family. We are all usually running in so many directions that we very rarely take the time we need together just hanging out.

T. made margaritas using fresh key lime, lemon and orange juice

See how nicely he crushed to ice...do you think maybe he's done this before?

Our theme this weekend was zucchini and how many we could use up before I had to start freezing them. One thing about zucchini is a little goes a long way. I barely made a dent in the box and I made Zucchini Double Chocolate Cake and Grilled Zucchini Gratin. Needless to say I have started freezing them already.

See the chunks of zucchini? This was a very light and moist cake. Even if I didn't have a case of zucchini I would love to make this again!

Zucchini Double Chocolate Cake


2 1/2 cups AP flour
1 1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 medium zucchini, shredded (about 2 cups)
1 cup Ghirardelli semi sweet chocolate chips

  • Grease and flour a 13 X 9 baking pan.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Add the oil, milk, butter and vanilla. Beat on low speed until combined.
  • Add the eggs and zucchini and beat on medium high speed for 2 minutes
  • Spread the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 35 minutes and cake tester comes out clean.
  • Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack. When cool sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve with fresh whipped cream.

Sticking closely with the theme...

Grilled Zucchini Gratin

I didn't follow a recipe for this but here goes...I sliced enough zucchini, lengthwise, to fill a 13 X 9 casserole dish with 2 layers. Approximately 6. I seasoned them and had T. grill them. I assembled them in the pan with one layer of zucchini which I sprinkled with seasoned bread crumbs. I topped that layer with some sliced tomatoes. I sprinkled all of this with goat cheese and topped it with mozzarella. For the final layer I covered all that with some more zucchini and mozzarella cheese and cooked for about 40 minutes or until hot and bubbling.

Save these recipes just in case you somehow end up with a case of zucchini or those plants that you plant now are huge producers!

As Always...

Happy Entertaining!!!



Thistlemoon said...

I just love zucchini - and espeically in a chocolate cake - it just makes it so moist and delicious! Judy, I need some tutoring on the Florida growing season! Why won't my herbs grow? Is this connected also to the lack of local produce at this stage in the game???

Anonymous said...

Judy, beautiful dishes! I love zucchini. Sorry to hear about your hubby. Hope he recovers quickly. Your maragarita looks delicious. I'm assuming you were drinking that while reading your book! Love that author and am not too jealous of the pool time as things are finally warm enough here to sit by the pool.

glamah16 said...

Im coming over forsome great food, swinning, and drinks. Hope your jusband gets better. He has a great support system.

Judy@nofearentertaining said...

Hey Jenn-I did warn you about our barren times. No one really believes that we can't have whatever we want all year long!

Hi lmcc-I am so glad you are able to be enjoying outside now!

Hey Glamah-anytime!!!

toontz said...

I am always looking for people that have too much zucchini so I can take it off of their hands, but no such luck so far! lol

Everything looks yummy, especially that drink!

Núria said...

Eeeehhhh that was a wonderful view: a book, your toes, the swimming pool and the margaritas!!! Awaaahhh, I wish it would stop raining to do the same next weekend :D

taste memory said...

agree what a wonderful view - this is the best part of living in Florida!

Peter M said...

Judy, I could swear I left a comment here yesterday...are you in need of a poolboy? Will work for zucchini bread and cocktails.

Anonymous said...

Any space for another at your patio table? This sounds like a perfectly lovely set of activities.

Brittany said...

Heaven! What an amazing day!

Judy@nofearentertaining said...

Hey Toontz - we love zucchini here too! That drink was good. He sweetened it with Agave Nectar.

Hey Nuria - I hope it stops raining for you too...maybe you could send us some. It's been months since our last rain!

It sure is Taste Memory. It's about all you can do in the wretched summer heat!

Oh Peter you just missed the cutoff. I hired someone else just before I got this comment...If only you had commented the day before!!! LOL

Hi Dana-there is always extra space around that table. You have no idea how many we can squeeze in there!

Hey Brittany-it was an amazing day. I want more of those!