spiced zucchini and pecan loaf

That leftover butterscotch cream cheese icing I had from this recipe was in the fridge, just crying out to be used. I thought I might team it with banana cake but when I found a few zucchini lurking in the crisper, I thought I might make a spiced zucchini cake instead, adapted from this recipe.

I'm always a bit wary of cakes made in a loaf tin as they always crack and have a tendency to be a bit dry. This cake is pretty easy to make; didn't crack too badly and the zucchini ensured the cake stayed nice and moist.

One of the benefits of icing is the icing covers up those cracks. I kept the decoration pretty simple - just a few toasted pecans and some shredded lime zest. If you think making the butterscotch sauce is a bit of an overkill, I think a lime flavoured cream cheese icing would also go really well with this cake. 

I took this into work and one of my colleagues said 'Good cake Jillian' and announced that she preferred zucchini cake to carrot cake and I think I have to agree. That butterscotch cream cheese icing goes really well with the cake, though to be honest I could just eat spoonfuls of the stuff and forgo the cake.

Here's the recipe for you which makes a small loaf cake. For a 23 cm/9 inch cake refer to the original recipe for quantities and baking time. For all my recipes, I use a 250 ml cup and a 20 ml tablespoon. All eggs are 60 grams and my oven is a conventional oven not fan forced, so you may need to reduce your oven temperature by 20°C.

Spiced Zucchini and Pecan Loaf
1 cup + 2 tbl (170g) plain flour
1½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
150g (⅔ cup) caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
⅓ cup (80 mls) sunflower oil
1 cup (150g) grated zucchini
½ cup (70g) pecans toasted, chopped
¼ cup buttermilk

To decorate
Butterscotch cream cheese icing
¼ cup toasted pecans
Shredded lime zest

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Grease and line a small loaf tin with baking paper. Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and cinnamon into a large bowl.

In a separate bowl, whisk the sugar, vanilla, eggs and oil together. Fold the egg mixture, zucchini, and pecans into the flour mixture. If the mixture looks a bit dry, then stir in the buttermilk. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes - 1 hour or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Transfer the cake to a wire rack to cool completely. Remove cake from the pan when cooled. I iced the cake with butterscotch cream cheese icing, then decorated the top with some toasted pecans and a little shredded lime zest.

Butterscotch Cream Cheese Icing
15 gm butter
15 gm brown sugar
15 mls cream
1 tsp golden syrup
60g cream cheese, softened at room temperature
25g unsalted butter
1 cup sifted icing sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract

First make the butterscotch. Combine the butter, brown sugar, the cream and the golden syrup in a small saucepan. Cook over a low heat until the butter melts and the mixture is smooth. Cook for a minute or two until the mixture thickens. Add a pinch of salt and set aside to cool. You’ll need to use 1 tbs of the butterscotch for the icing.

In a small bowl combine the cream cheese, the butter, icing sugar, the vanilla extract and 1 tbs of butterscotch. Beat the mixture until it’s soft and creamy.

Moist and delicious!

See you all again next week with some more baking from my kitchen.

Bye for now,


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