My first meeting with pastry chef Melissa Weller began when I showed up at her doorstep and made myself at home in her kitchen. It wasn’t trespassing; it was journalism - the kind where you scribble some notes and eat lots of baked goods. That afternoon, the one thing I was unable to try was her zucchini bread. She’d filled it with summer savory, oregano, thyme, olive oil, and walnuts. I had become allergic to those nuts the summer I turned seventeen. But I loved the idea of putting olive oil and fresh herbs in there, and I wanted a loaf I could eat. If you’re not allergic, I won’t be offended if you try it her way.
makes two 8 × 4-inch loaves
2 small zucchini
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the pans
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/3 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing
3/4 cup shelled salted roasted pistachios, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh mint
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease and flour two 8 × 4-inch loaf pans. If desired, line with parchment paper.
Grate the zucchini using the large holes of a box grater onto a kitchen towel (you should have about 2½ cups), then squeeze out the excess liquid.
In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pepper. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs. Gradually whisk in the olive oil, pouring it in a steady stream. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, gently stirring to combine. Then add the zucchini, pistachios, and mint, gently stirring to incorporate.
Divide the mixture between the prepared pans. Bake, rotating halfway through, until the tops are light golden and a tester inserted into the centers comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes.
Let the loaves cool for 10 minutes and then remove them from the pans. Wrapped in aluminum foil or plastic wrap, or sealed in a plastic bag, the zucchini bread can be stored at room temperature for up to 2 days, or refrigerated for a week.
Reprinted with permission from Kitchen Remix by Charlotte Druckman, copyright © 2020. Photographs by Aubrie Pick. Published by Clarkson Potter, a division of Penguin Random House, LLC.
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