Friday, August 12, 2011

Changes and Chocolate Chips

If I blog from my brand new laptop, is my writing the same? And if I have a driver's license in a new state, am I a more experienced driver? What if I have a new gym membership at a fancy, urban gym? Can I run faster? If I have no family, no home in Indiana and no plans to back, am I still a Hoosier?

Everything is changing and I'm trying to hold on. Going to college is the biggest transition I've ever faced. I'm excited for the changes; I want to grow into myself the way only college students can. But how do you know how much to change and what to hold on to? And when the people in my life are dispersing across the nation, who's going to tell me if I start to lose my way?

I guess the key is to maintain my integrity as a person even as I adapt. I'm changing qualities of myself just like I might take half a cup of sugar from a recipe for zucchini bread, switch out the vegetable oil for applesauce, or add in a grated summer squash. The result is slightly different, sure, but with any luck, it's for the best.

This delicious recipe from my aunt makes two loaves: one to keep and one to give to a friend (if you're feeling generous). If you prefer muffins, it will make about 24 muffins.

Oh, and if you're like my dad and you think chocolate with vegetables is just plain confusing, feel free to leave out the chocolate chips.

Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread
recipe adapted from my aunt, Eliza

3 eggs
1 c vegetable oil or applesauce
1 1/4 to 2 c sugar (you don't need as much if you do applesauce)
2 t vanilla
2 to 3 c shredded zucchini (or a mix of zucchini and yellow summer squash)
3 c flour
2 t baking soda
1/4 t baking powder
1 t salt
1 1/2 t cinnamon
1/8 t nutmeg (optional)
1 to 1 1/2 c chocolate chips (a mix of regular and mini chips looks nice)
1 c walnuts, chopped

Preheat oven to 350. Grease two 9x5x3 loaf pans or muffin tins.

Combine eggs, oil (or applesauce), sugar, vanilla. Beat until smooth. Stir in flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, zucchini. Fold in chocolate chips and nuts.

Spread batter in two greased pans or in muffin cups (filling 2/3 full).

Bake at 350 for 1 hour or until a toothpick comes out clean. For muffins, bake 20 minutes.

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