Better Homes and Gardens (Australia) - - Spring Baking -

Prepa­ra­tion time 15 mins Cook­ing time 35 mins Serves 12

Cook­ing oil spray, to grease 400g zuc­chini (about 2 zuc­chini),

un­peeled, chopped

1 cup milk

60g baby spinach leaves

1 cup co­coa pow­der

250g but­ter, melted

2 cups brown sugar, firmly packed 6 free-range eggs

2 cups plain flour

1 tsp bi­car­bon­ate of soda

½ tsp bak­ing pow­der Straw­ber­ries, hulled,

quar­tered, to garnish Edible flow­ers, to garnish Jas­mine vine leaves and straw­berry leaves from your gar­den, to garnish (do not eat, dec­o­ra­tion only) Avo­cado choco­late frost­ing 1½ av­o­ca­dos, halved, stoned

½ cup co­coa pow­der

¾ cup ic­ing sugar mix­ture

1 tsp vanilla ex­tract

STEP 1 Pre­heat oven to 180°C fan-forced (200°C con­ven­tional). Grease two 20cm round cake tins with cook­ing oil then line base and sides with bak­ing pa­per. Put zuc­chini and milk in a blender and blitz un­til smooth. Add spinach and co­coa and blitz again.

STEP 2 Put but­ter and brown sugar in a large bowl and whisk un­til com­bined. Whisk in eggs, 1 at a time. Pour in zuc­chini mix­ture and whisk again un­til smooth. It’s OK if mix­ture looks a lit­tle split.

STEP 3 Sift in flour, bi­carb and bak­ing pow­der and stir un­til smooth. Pour evenly into pre­pared tins. Bake for 45 min­utes or un­til cooked when tested with a skewer. Set aside cakes for 15 min­utes then turn out onto a wire rack to cool com­pletely.

STEP 4 To make avo­cado choco­late frost­ing, put all frost­ing in­gre­di­ents in the bowl of a food pro­ces­sor and process un­til a smooth paste forms.

STEP 5 Spread ½ of the frost­ing on 1 cake then put other cake on top. Spread re­main­ing frost­ing on top. To serve, garnish with straw­ber­ries, edible flow­ers and leaves (for dec­o­ra­tion only, do not eat).

Choco­late and zuc­chini cake

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