Bake or Break

Zucchini Cake

For the latest edition of Waiter There’s Something In My, the theme is layer cakes. Not being a fan of making layer cakes, I decided that this was my motivation to make one and contribute. I scoured many a recipe looking for a good candidate that would be delicious and a bit different. I was looking for more than your standard chocolate layer cake.

This lovely cake is from one of my favorite cookbooks, How to Be a Domestic Goddess by Nigella Lawson. She is very reassuring in her description of this cake that the strange main ingredient, zucchini, does indeed make for good cake. I believed her. After all, I am a big fan of zucchini bread.

As far as making the cake, it’s really rather simple. There are several separate components to make, but it all came together rather easily and quickly. After I had the cake batter made, I began to doubt Nigella’s allegiance to this cake. I soldiered on, however, and had a beautiful cake to show for it in the end.

I wish I could tell you that I loved this cake. Quite simply, I didn’t care for it. That being said, I should also make a point that Quinn really, really liked it. We decided that our difference of opinion could be chalked up to the heavy citrus flavor. He’s a much bigger fan of lime, lemon, orange, etc. than I ever thought about being.

As I said, this cake is indeed lovely. It is not my intention to dissuade you from making it. If you like strong citrus flavors, then dive in and make it. As for me, I think I’ll stick with some of my tried and true favorites… like chocolate.

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    14 Comments on “Zucchini Cake”

  1. This cake looks divine – what a shame you didn’t enjoy it much!

  2. Does this Zucchini cake freeze?

  3. Thanks, Sophie! I do wish I had liked it more, but there will be plenty more things for me to enjoy. Especially now that we’re approaching the holidays.

    Glen, I think you could freeze it. I might just freeze the cake itself and not the filling or icing.

  4. Your photo looks wonderful, Jennifer!

  5. Hey Jennifer! Thanks for the comment on the Italian Cream Cake! I love your blog and check it regularly. I’ve made quite a few things from here and they’ve all been delicious, but the Italian Cream Cake is definitely my favorite so far!

  6. This is the most glamorous zucchini cake I’ve ever seen. I usually make mine in a loaf pan without the filling or icing. It looks like the ugly stepsister next to this one. Looks like I’ll have to tap my inner goddess next time.

  7. Poor is always hit or miss with her.

  8. I’m with Peabody, Nigella’s recipes can be a bit off. I wonder if something went wrong in translation from Uk measurements to US? Do you use weight or volume in your baking, Jennifer?

    But not a loss, right? Cause holy smoked, that is one good-looking cake.

    And hey, think about doing a Bundt cake for the National Big Bundt Appreciation Bake-off, which I’m hosting in honor of Bundt Day, 11/15.

  9. Could you really taste the zucchini in the cake? Or did it just give it a particular flavor?
    I have one of Nigella’s books and not all the recipe turned out well… but she definitely is the citrus goddess! So many of her recipes use some form of it.
    Great photo nonetheless!

  10. Thanks, everyone, for the compliments!

    Nora, that’s a good thought, but the measurements were right. I actually thought after I mixed the batter, that if it were my recipe, I would have added more flavor to the cake. Oh, well… I will definitely try to get that Bundt cake done!

    Jenn, the zucchini didn’t really taste much like zucchini in the finished product. I realy think that if the citrus element were tamed down, I could have really liked it.

  11. I’m with you on chocolate but certainly wouldnt say no to a slice or two of this one. Many thanks for the conribution to waiter.

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