zucchini lemon loaf and chicken thigh mushroom ravioli casserole

September is for zucchini recipes… there are a billion of them floating around out there and they basically are all the same… until now… this one – I am telling you – is my all-time favourite…

I do not lie… this one is so yummy – I’m not pretending it is healthy – but it is delicious and I found it pairs well with morning coffee, morning tea, afternoon coffee, afternoon tea… (yes, I doubled the recipe and made three loaves and ended up having basically an entire loaf for myself)

zucchini lemon loaf

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups grated zucchini, dried on paper towel
1 1/4 cups sugar
zest of 2 lemons
1/2 cup canola oil
2 eggs
2/3 cup buttermilk
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
2 tbsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt
Glaze:
1 cup icing sugar
1 1/2 tbsp buttermilk
1 tbsp lemon juice

Directions:
preheat oven to 325 degrees
grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan with non stick cooking spray
in a mixing bowl, add sugar and lemon zest
add canola oil and eggs and beat
add buttermilk and lemon juice
in another bowl, mix flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda and kosher salt
add the flour mixture and zucchini to the mixing bowl in stages
don’t overmix
pour into the loaf pan
bake for 50-55 minutes
using a toothpick see if it is cooked through
let sit and then take out of the pan and cool on a rack
mix up the glaze and pour over when the loaf is cooled down

this week I was in need of some simple recipes as I am training my dogs with their new and improved GPS collars to keep them in my yard… I needed to simplify the meals that were going to the field so I had time to monitor how my dogs were doing with these collars and go for walks with them around the boundary…

and let’s be honest – after a month or whatever of harvest – I would be looking for simple meals anyways…

hello Costco – I grab a few of their pre-made salads and I think to myself, if I add one fresh ingredient to them (cauliflower, tomatoes etc) then it is basically my homemade salad!

this main course I did is my daughter’s and son’s favourite… I used boneless chicken thighs, mushroom ravioli, mushrooms and then made an easy cream sauce

it can be tricky cooking with these little foil containers… they do tend to burn on the bottom and you need to grease them up so everything doesn’t just stick…

easiest thing is to have everything pre-cooked… so I bbq’d the chicken thighs (I used my favourite chicken bbq spice but just use whatever you love) and chopped them up…

then for the mushrooms, sliced them and sauted them to get the moisture out and seasoned them as well…

this left the noodles and sauce… I made up the sauce (your basic butter with flour and then add milk, salt and pepper and parmesan cheese or whatever cheese you like in a white sauce) and poured it into a large measuring cup so I could easily pour it over each dish…

having all of this ready, you then can boil the noodles, they don’t take long, and I just use a strainer and put directly on top of the first layer of chicken… I used 6 raviolis per container…

the order I assembled in was chicken, raviolis, mushrooms, chicken and then sauce…

we did put some parmesan cheese on top and cover and into a 350 degree oven for roughly 20-25 minutes until bubbling and warmed through… if you are using cold ingredients or they have had to sit for awhile, you might need to lengthen the cooking time…

at this point in harvest I am employing not only a 12 year old girl but a 7 year old cat… I make the cat count forks to make sure we aren’t missing any… this cat runs a pretty tight ship and doesn’t miss a thing…

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