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Seriously Simple: Brown butter zucchini bread is an autumnal delight
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Seriously Simple: Brown butter zucchini bread is an autumnal delight

From the 5 recipes to make when you don't have time to cook series
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Try this for breakfast, tea or even dessert.

This version of zucchini bread is by far my favorite. Brown butter kicks up the flavor a few notches, and the crusty sugar topping adds an additional surprise. To me, this bread signals that autumn is upon us. It’s also a yummy way to use up any surplus summer squash.

There is no need to remove the excess water from the zucchini here; in fact, it helps to develop a moist bread. What’s Seriously Simple about this recipe is you only need a large mixing bowl to put it all together. A quick tip: I always measure out my ingredients on paper to lessen clean-up.

I think you will really like the complementary textures of the soft, brown butter bread with the crispy sugar topping. Look for either sanding, raw or turbinado sugar. Make sure to let the bread cool completely before slicing it or it might fall apart. Try this for breakfast, tea or even dessert. Watch how fast it disappears!

Brown Butter Zucchini Bread

Yields 1 (9-inch by 5-inch loaf)

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups shredded zucchini
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch of ginger and nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon sanding, raw or turbinado sugar

1. Coat a nonstick 9-inch-by-5-inch loaf pan with baking spray. Preheat the oven to 350 F.

2. Place the butter in a small saucepan on medium-high heat. Cook the butter until it turns brown and is slightly fragrant. Remove from heat and reserve.

3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the eggs, sugars and vanilla and whisk together until nicely blended. Add the cooled brown butter. Combine the zucchini and mix with a large spoon to evenly incorporate the ingredients.

4. Place a large piece of parchment paper or wax paper on the counter. Sift together the flour, baking soda and powder, salt and spices onto the paper.

5. Carefully sprinkle the dry ingredients into the wet mixture and mix to evenly blend.

6. Pour into the prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle the tablespoon coarse sugar evenly on top of the batter.

7. Bake for about 55 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Let cool completely in the pan. Slice and serve.

(Diane Rossen Worthington is an authority on new American cooking. She is the author of 18 cookbooks, including “Seriously Simple Parties,” and a James Beard Award-winning radio show host. You can contact her at www.seriouslysimple.com.)

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