Monday, November 5, 2012

Cranberry and Walnut Zucchini Bread

Hold the phone, shut the front door and get out of town. I never thought I’d use this word in my blog. But I suppose there is a first time for everything. Here it goes. The word is…vegan. I am not a vegan, nor do I intend to adopt a vegan diet. Sorry vegans; it’s mainly the whole idea of giving up dairy – not even the meat so much. But a lifetime without goat cheese, parmesan, and mozzarella seems deprived of joy.  However, I am now a believer that vegan recipes can be delicious! Let’s take that a step further.  I am now a believer that vegan recipes can actually taste better than their non-vegan counterpart.  I feel a little lash of Southern sacrilege saying that. But let’s say a Hail Mary and move on. All things in moderation, right? If there’s a recipe that can effectively cut down my daily consumption of animal byproducts and dairy, without sacrificing taste, I’m all for it!

Feast your stomachs on this recipe for cranberry and walnut zucchini bread. It is perfection. I never knew a baked good could taste so flavorful and moist without eggs and butter. Oh, that’s another word I don’t like. The word moist gives me the heebie jeebies. I made four loaves of this zucchini bread.  So far, I’ve managed to only eat one. The rest are in my freezer, waiting to be consumed with family over Thanksgiving and Christmas. 

I found this recipe on a food blog called Hell Yeah It’s Vegan, and used the base of it for my own.  I used dark brown sugar vs light brown sugar, and added in the dried cranberries and walnuts. Voila! Make these loaves ahead of time, put them in your freezer, and bring them out when you have guests during the holidays. They will thank you for it.

On the music side, I’m in love with this duet from the show Nashville. It's a cover of the Civil Wars' song "If I Didn't Know Better". I think Sam Palladio and Clare Bowen (actors) should just cut a record together because I would have it on repeat 24/7. This song is soulful and sultry. And with a haunting melody, you can appreciate the lyrics as well.

Furthermore, I see a strong parallel between this song and my feelings towards the zucchini bread. “If I didn’t know better”, I’d believe that because this is a vegan recipe it must be extra healthy. “If I didn’t know better”, I’d say that because there are vegetables in this bread, it cancels out all the sugar. “If I didn’t know better, I wouldn't have eaten an entire load by myself. "If I didn't know better...but, damn it, I do.”    

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