September 30, 2010

Q: Zucchini? A: Muffins

I won't have a bumper crop of zucchini this fall because I only have a couple of plants. However, I'm going to make the most of what I do get!  My first one grew faster than I realized, so with it I made...

Sourdough Zucchini Muffins

2 cups grated zucchini
2 cups unbleached white flour
1 cup sourdough starter (whole wheat)
1/2 cup oil (I used coconut)
1/2 cup sugar (I used raw)
1 egg
1/2 tbsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp nutmeg

Have on hand, a half cup or so of milk or water.

Blend all ingredients except milk. Then add enough milk or water (about a cup for this batch), for the batter to be not too thick, but neither too runny. Muffins with whole grain rise best if the batter is soft, something like this...

The secret to tender muffins is to mix the ingredients without over-beating. Beating begins to develop the gluten, which changes their texture. That's why old recipes call for hand mixing muffins or pancake batter for about 50 strokes.

Spoon into a greased or papered muffin pan and bake at 425 for about 25 to 30 minutes.

As a base recipe this makes about a dozen muffins.  With 2 cups of grated zucchini, I got a dozen and a half.

These are not overly sweet, which is how we like them.  They're perfect with butter, a favorite jelly, or homemade apple butter!

Q: Zucchini?  A: Muffins photos & text © Sept. 2010 by Leigh at


Nina said...

I love zucchini muffins. I often add raisins or walnuts as well. I do find 1/2 cup of oil excessive though. Lots of muffin recipes use that much. I always tweak my recipes to have no more than 1/4 cup of oil/fat. I add applesauce to replace it and sometimes some yogourt. I get a lower fat, very moist muffin, though I daresay I sacrifice a bit of the light and fluffy bit to do so. My family doesn't seem to mind. I also replace at least 1/2 of the white flour with whole wheat. We can get a soft whole wheat pastry flour here which makes awesome muffins and quick breads.

Renee Nefe said...

I like how your recipe sounds. Mine (from the Better Homes & Garden's cookbook) calls for just a cup of zucchini and to me that seems like they're paying lip service to the zucchini... I want to try yours cuz I want to taste zucchini in my muffin. yum!

since the squash bugs totaled my squash plants, I'll be running to the farmer's market to get some zucchini. :D

bspinner said...

Everyone of your posts that include pictures of your produce make me so hungry. This one tops all the rest. Muffins look great!!!

Leigh said...

Nina, I love applesauce for moist cakes and muffins. When I have it :). I've never tried yogurt in my baking because in our house yogurt is always designated for other things. I've found that molasses helps keep things moist as well.

The ingredients for these muffins though, reflect a change in my personal food philosophy. It started when I read Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions, and was strengthened by the follow-up research I did. Thanks to the scholarly articles on fats by biologist and nutritionist Ray Peat, I have completely changed the kinds of fats and the ways I use them.

I'm also a great fan of whole grains, but now only use them if soaked or fermented (whole wheat sour dough starter). Again, that started with Fallon, but the research provided by Phytic really sealed the deal for me. Best of all, DH noticed an immediate benefit from soaking our grains and flours. He can now eat things he had trouble digesting before.

I really should start getting whole wheat pastry flour (or soft wheat berries) again. You're right about how good it is in muffins and quick breads (cookies, cakes, etc.) I'm guessing it's because pastry flour is lower in gluten.

Renee, I have to confess that I just dumped in what I had! I'll definitely use the same amount next time though. Lucky you to have a farmers market! Our closest one has more crafts than produce.

Barb, I know what you mean. I love looking at others' recipes and food photos. Always inspires me to go cook something good to eat!

Anonymous said...

I have one word for ya...YUMMY!!


Benita said...

Man, those sound awesome! And that butter melting on them looks great.

Mama Pea said...

M-m-m, m-m-m-m, those look good. Our zucchini is all done for this year, and I have to confess I didn't make one single baked item (or even freeze some grated for using later) with it this year. We ate the small ones in salads, or soups, or scrambled eggs and the ones that got away from me we fed to the poultry. Now, of course, I'm wishing I had put some in the freezer! I'll have to save your recipe for next year.

Anonymous said...

Great looking muffins!

Leigh said...

Pam, thanks! I'm sure you could substitute an egg substitute to make it vegan.

Benita, melting butter is always the icing on the cake so to speak, isn't it? Really though, I like them hot without butter. Plain is good too.

Mama Pea, I hadn't thought about putting it in scrambled eggs. Good idea! Thanks for mentioning.

Thanks Evelyn, they were!

Vicki said...

They look absolutely delicious Leigh. As usual an interesting post which makes me jealous since I didn't have a vegie garden this year. On a different note, did you get your computer problems all worked out?

Leigh said...

Vicki, yes, for the most part the new computer is doing really well. Thank you for asking. I had a few nervous moments installing Ubuntu, but fortunately it went without a glitch. There are still old files on the old computer, which I need to get. Plus all my bookmarks. The only problem with that is that after copying to several CDs, the CD writer quits. That makes it slow, but at least they're still there!

Robin said...

Yum, those sound good. I've never made anything remotely like that before.