I am back in the Okanagan and enjoying all the fresh produce. My parents neighbors have an amazing garden and let us pick some things today, my mother went and picked a massive zucchini the other day as well. As I was staring at this giant zucchini I got an idea for a cake.
If you go on Pinterest you will find almost all zucchini recipes that are sweet, are either brownies, chocolate cake or spice cake. Which I love all of those, but I wanted something a bit different in flavor, I guess something more tangy is what I was looking for. That is when I thought why not put fresh cranberries and oranges into a cake with zucchini, the end result ended up being this moist beauty.
Orange Cranberry Zucchini Cake
2 cups of all purpose flour
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
3/4 cup of white sugar
3/4 brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup of melted butter
1/2 cup of applesauce
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1/3 cup of sour cream
2 cups of shredded fresh zucchini
1 cup of fresh cranberries
zest and juice from one large orange
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and line two round 8 inch cake pans with butter and parchment paper.
In a bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
In a large bowl cream together the sugars, orange zest and melted butter. Add the applesauce and orange juice, then mix in the eggs. Mix in the vanilla and sour cream.
Mix in the zucchini and cranberries into the wet ingredients. Take the dry ingredients and fold it into the wet until just combined. Separate the batter into the two prepare pans equally.
Bake for 30 minutes, or until tops are golden brown and when a toothpick is inserted comes out clean.
Remove the cakes from the oven and allow them to cool completely before icing.
Directions for icing and decorating the cake:
Make the cream cheese icing by creaming together 1 - 8 ounce block of cream cheese, softened, and 6 tablespoons of butter. Add 3 cups of icing sugar and orange zest from one large orange. Cream all the ingredients together until nice and smooth.
Remove the cakes from the pans, take the parchment paper off the bottoms. place one cake on a cake stand and add about 1/3 of the icing to it, place the next piece of cake on top. Add the rest of the icing to the top and start working it towards the edges and with a flat metal spatula smear the icing all around the sides.
If you want to add a few embellishments to the cake, add a few frozen cranberries, skinny strips of orange peels and also a few thin slices of freshly cut oranges.
As you can tell it is a bit warm here in Kelowna, it was around 37 Celsius today which is close to 100 Fahrenheit. So my poor icing was a bit warm, but I went with it and I actually loved how it is oozing from the cake.
I loved the tangy zip from the fresh cranberries and orange zest, it just added a nice flavor that you don't find as often in zucchini cakes.
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