Sweet And Crumby

Baking, a Love Story

A Pumped Up Zucchini and a Glorious Cake Mistake


I didn’t know it until this blog, but apparently I am a bundt person.  I hadn’t realized it until just a few posts into this whole blogging thing and low and behold I am already on my second bundt.  This blog is really helping me to get to know myself better and to my surprise I love big bundts.  Pun intended.  Sorry!

It all started with this pumped up Zucchini.  Remember Hans and Franz who Pumped You Up on SNL in the 80’s? No? Then you are too young.  Ah well, you missed out.  Back to the Zucchini…it was grown in my mother’s front yard (and not on steroids I might add) along with a plethora of other equally magnificent veggies.

I am trying to grow some of my own vegetables in the backyard, and I am having a tiny bit of success.  When a cucumber cake makes this blog, you will know that my garden has really hit the big times.

My mother has given me a truck load of zucchinis in the last few weeks, and I have recently made Israeli Couscous stuffed zucchini,  zucchini bread and many savory zucchini dishes.  I was craving something sweet for this Zucchini though.  What a shocker!

After web surfing, I found exactly what I was looking for on David Lebovitz’s site in the form of a luscious looking bundt cake.  It called for a crunchy lemon glaze, but I only had home grown oranges…poor me…I know how sad.  Sarcasm just isn’t the same on paper screen.  I used the oranges for juice and zest in place of the lemons. I also decided to skip the crunchiness of the glaze and thus relied solely on powdered sugar. I thought that sounded better, and I’m the queen here so what the heck.

Everything about this cake turned out perfectly!  The cake is beautifully soft, moist,  and light TASTING…not light calorically, I am never here on a health rampage I’m afraid.

I was running late for work this morning since I had been baking this cake….bad, bad excuse…sorry boss man, and therefore I poured the glaze on while the cake was STILL HOT! I knew that was a big mistake, but I simply did not have time for the shenanigans of waiting patiently for it to cool properly.

I decided to jump in with both feet and poured it over, decorated it for you all, my faithful followers (all 10 of you or so…two being my parents and one being my niece), and ran out the door with it to bestow on my lucky co-workers and boss (had to bribe the boss with my cake…this was a “Sorry I’m late” cake).

As expected, much of the glaze ran right off the cake and puddled on the plate, in the center, around the sides–it puddled everywhere. Then something absolutely WONDERFUL happened by accident! While I traveled with it in tow, the cake soaked in this glorious citrus sugary puddle and the bottom became down right decadent…a little crispy from the sugar, and yet sweetly soggy with the orange juice all at the same time! YUM, YUM, YUM. I will absolutely cause this accident to happen again on the next run, but accidentally on purpose I might add.

I hope you make it and enjoy it even if you don’t have a pumped up Zucchini on steroids. 🙂

Zucchini Cake
From: David Lebovitz (Recipe has been minorly altered…click on Zucchini Cake link for actual recipe)
1 cup (135g) almonds, pecans, or walnuts, toasted
2 cups (280g) all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon dried ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 3/4 (350g) cups sugar
1 cup (250ml) extra-virgin olive oil (I used 1/2 c. canola oil and 1/2 c. olive oil)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups (300g) finely grated zucchini (about 3-4 medium zucchini)
2 tsp. freshly grated orange zest

Geni’s Orange Glaze
adapted from David Lebovitz’s Lemon Glaze
1/4. juice from a freshly squeezed orange (more if needed for consistency)
1  1/3c. sifted powdered sugar
orange slices and grated orange zest for garnishment (I also used sliced zucchini)

Cake: Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray coat a bundt pan and flour it as well, making sure to cover entire surface by tapping flour around the pan and eventually discarding excess flour into the sink by tapping it upside down.  Peel and core zucchini(s) and grate in a food processor.  You do need finely grated zucchini for this recipe.  Dump out zucchini and reserve.  Toast nuts on top of the stove on medium to medium high heat, pushing them around with a spatula, being careful not to burn them.  Toast for 3-4 minutes.  Then place the nuts in the food processor with the chopping blade and pulverize the nuts.

In a large mixing bowl, sift flour through nutmeg and set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine eggs, sugar and oils and beat for three minutes until light and fluffy.  Add vanilla and combine.  Mix in the dry ingredients, 1/2 at a time, then turning mixer on low speed to combine each time, scraping down the bowl.  Add the grated zucchini and the nuts and mix together on low speed again, scraping the bowl to incorporate all ingredients.  Pour batter into prepared bundt pan and bake for 40-50 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched and toothpick comes out clean.  Let it cool in the pan until the pan is cool enough to handle (about 15 minutes), then pop the cake out.

While the cake is finishing the baking process, combine your juice from the orange and powdered sugar, whisking briskly until smooth. Typically, you would let the cake cool before glazing.  I poured the glaze on in a zig zag fashion over the cake and the glaze, as expected, puddled around the sides and in the center.  While the cake continued to cool, it sat in the puddles of glaze and soaked it in, creating a nice, crispy yet sweet sogginess to the bottom of the cake.  I thought it was wonderful.  If you would like the original Lemon glaze as prepared on David Lebovitz’s site, please just click through.  His photos and instructions are far superior.

18 thoughts on “A Pumped Up Zucchini and a Glorious Cake Mistake

  1. Clever “mistake,” Geni! I don’t believe in the whole “patience is a virtue” and always have to force myself to not rush when baking.

    It does look like a tasty Bundt cake, with many tastes and textures. Well done.


  2. That sounds like a wonderful accident with the citrusy glaze! I love bundt cake…

  3. I am craving a piece! I just might need to bake this bundt cake, mistakes and all.

  4. That zucchini could PUMP. (clap). YOU UP.
    I’m wearing my gray sweatsuit as I type this.

    Another good one. I may just have to bake. Darn you!

  5. Some of my best recipes came from mistakes. I would guess, this is more common than we think.

    You have a delightful way of writing. I enjoy visiting here.

  6. It looks so yummy. I can’t wait to try the recipe.

    • Since it is not my recipe I think I can say without sounding too arrogant that it really is wonderful. I did not expect to like it as much as I did because it does not contain chocolate. 

  7. Oh my goodness – I just made this cake last night! What a coincidence! (Ok, I guess it is not that surprising, since I also found it on David Lebovitz’s blog…But still!)

  8. I love happy mistakes. I have a giant zucchini gifted from my neighbor and I need some good ideas to use it up. I can only make so many muffins. Like you I’ll bring my cake to work to share. Nicely done.

  9. The cake looks great. I am a huge fan of zucchini. I want to try this. I am making cupcakes for a bake sale and I think I could make this cake too. Thanks.

    • I think a bundt cake is a great idea for a bake sale since it is such a sturdy and pretty cake! This one is really delicious too thanks to the great recipe from David Lebovitz’s blog.

  10. Pingback: Midnight Skinnydipping | A Rose Is A Rose

  11. Pingback: Zucchini Cake « Try It You Might Like It

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