In this summer’s informal series of zucchini recipes, we have reached #2! I had so many requests for zucchini bread that I knew I couldn’t pass up on a fun version of it. And yes, I know it’s hot, but it’ll be worth it to have your oven on for an hour with Cherry Chocolate Zucchini Bread being the outcome. Even with this massive loaf I somehow still have SO MUCH FREAKIN’ ZUCCHINI!
There are worse problems to have, right? Like I don’t know, maybe having rats make your tomato plants their personal buffet? Because that’s happening right now. I’ve built a fortress around them, yet, they still have gotten to the tomatoes. I ordered an outdoor/solar-powered Ultrasonic Repeller with strobes, that should be here in a couple of days. In the meantime, I’m praying to the tomato gods that it will work and that I’ll be able to keep the fruits, because right now I’m feeling defeated in this war.
If you have any vegan-friendly/organic tips for keeping the rats from eating my tomatoes, I am WAY OPEN to any of them. So far, I have netting and bricks all around the plants, I’ve sprinkled cayenne everywhere. I set up small, spotlights on the tomatoes, even. (who knowwwsss?!?!) And everything else I read just says poison them or set up traps, and obviously I’m not down for that. So, let’s here those tips! <3
Let’s get back to the happier side of gardening and this cherry chocolate zucchini bread. Like I said, I have plenty of zucchini, so this is a nice way to use up one of the smaller ones. Plus, I found beautiful organic cherries at the grocery store the other day and almost forgot about them. Oops. So, in the bread they went! For some added flavor and richness, I added chocolate chunks, which was a great idea.
I also used coconut sugar instead of brown sugar, but you could use either. Or you could do a 1/2 & 1/2 split for a little sweeter version of this. I like having the bread on the less sweet side, so that I can either spread vegan butter or jam on it, depending on my breakfast feels. If you’re feeling generous, make this recipe in 3-4 small loaf pans (baking about 35 minutes), and gift them!
Summer time means eating as much cold food as possible, and this year has been no different! As much as I love smoothies I don’t have them often throughout the other seasons. But, Summer? They’re basically what I’m living on. And Gazpacho is just a savory smoothie, right? So, instead of my everyday green smoothie I thought I’d switch it up with this pretty, layered, Strawberry Peach Smoothie!
There’s a fun thing about this smoothie, that you may not realize. I snuck a bunch of zucchini in it! So, not only do you get a different variety of vitamins, you get to use up some of the bounty from you (or your nice neighbor’s) garden. Right now, I have over 20 pounds of zucchini (two plants was maybe overkill), so I’m looking for all of the ways to use it! Below is a pic of just some of the pretty squash I have on hand.
To make this smoothie super creamy, I used Silk’s Unsweetened Cashew Milk and added raw, hulled hemp seeds for some protein. I don’t like adding sweetener or juice to my smoothies, because I find the fruit sweet enough. But, if you like a sweeter smoothie, add frozen bananas to each layer, or soaked dates!
And here’s a smoothie tip for you: If you don’t have time during the week to pick and choose ingredients for a smoothie. Take time one day a week to prep, and measure out ingredients for each and separate them into zip bags or jars. Then, each morning, place contents in a blender with water, non-dairy milk, or coconut water, and blend! Easy-peasy.
I guess you could say that tip would also work well for some blended mixed drinks, eh? 😉 Also, another tip! You can get coupons off of Silk products by signing up for their newsletter! Plus, they share a lot of awesome recipe ideas on their instagram, if you’re into that kind of thing.
Also, stay tuned for SO MANY zucchini recipes. So many. I hope that you’re as excited as I am! And as always, I’m open to your dish suggestions. Now, go, make this Strawberry Peach Smoothie and enjoy! <3
Before I went vegan, and when I was a regular at a Japanese restaurant in Orange County, I used to eat black sesame ice cream all of the time. Since going vegan, I had never encountered a Jackie-friendly version! This was a super sad time for me, even if I didn’t realize that I missed this flavor so much. That all changed when Cocobella Creamery opened in Hollywood. Because of them, I decided to make this Black Sesame Coconut Ice Cream, so that we can all enjoy!
I have to tell you though, when I got the black sesame at Cocobella, it was straight up amazing. Like, I’m an addict. So, if you’re in the Hollywood area and are looking for some vegan ice cream that is oh-so-good, you need to stop by there! They have late hours, too. Below is my cone from them with a scoop each of Black Sesame and Fudge Brownie. Mmmm…
Dreaming of yesterday, when I went to the grand opening of @cocobellacreamery and indulged is some amazing #vegan ice cream!🍦😍 So many flavors, including the Black Sesame (up top) and Toasted S'mores, then some toppings and a couple of cones to choose from. You MUST check this place out! Right by @doomies and @cruciferousla (coming soon).👌💚
Back to my recipe! The flavor is not necessarily the same as the one at Cocobella, but it is still SO good. It’s black sesame coconut ice cream, because the coconut flavor is more present, as it’s the base. If you don’t want to have it be as coconutty, use 1 can coconut milk + 1 cup water + 1/2 cup raw cashews.
Either way you make it, it’ll be super creamy, with that savory flavor of sesame seeds but sweet. And while I usually top my stirfries with all kinds of sesame seeds, I love having them in this ice cream for a change! I don’t think I realized there were so many health benefits to them. Black sesame seeds are high in Iron, Calcium and Vitamin E.
If you’re looking to make this black sesame coconut ice cream, you can find the seeds at a variety of stores. Some health food stores, like Sprouts and Whole Foods have them, while I got mine at an Indian market! (It’s probably a lot cheaper at the Indian market, to be honest.) Another thing, I added xanthan gum to this which really gave it an amazing texture! If you don’t have that on-hand, try 1 tablespoon of arrowroot, instead.
I love the addition of chocolate sauce to this cone, as it adds another layer of richness. The chopped almonds add a nice crunch to an otherwise smooth and fluffy treat. Of course, these are all optional, but I highly recommend them! So, go ahead, save yourself from the summer heat with this black sesame coconut ice cream!