Zucchini, Cocoa, Olive Oil and Walnut Cake Recipe

15 Dec

I was jumping around the lounge room last night when I received a text saying that my friends had welcomed their third child into the world. I wanted to make something to take to the hospital in celebration that would look good yet still be nourishing post labour. I found a few recipes that incorporated vegetables and nuts into a cake and I made my own version. I had plenty of batter so I made a cake to take to the hospital and friands to try at home.

TIP: I took a box of large tissues, a knife and a cake slide to the hospital to make serving easy.


2 cups white flour

2 cups white sugar

3/4 cup pure cocoa powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon powder

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup full cream cow’s milk

1 cup melted butter (I used salted because I don’t like overly sweet cakes)

4 eggs

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

3/4 cup chopped walnuts

3 cups zucchini grated


250g dark chocolate

Small carton pure pouring cream


Handful of shelled pistachios chopped or crushed

1 tablespoon edible dried rose buds crushed

1 tablespoon edible lavender

Combine the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, cinnamon powder, baking powder and salt.

Stir in the butter, olive oil and eggs until smooth.

Add enough milk to loosen the batter to a pourable consistency and stir in the zucchini and walnuts.

Pour the mixture into a greased cake or tart tin. I filled a friand tin with half of the batter.

Bake in the oven at 175ºc, the cake will take 1 hour and the friands will cook in less time. Test by inserting a skewers into the middle of the cake and friands and when the skewer is removed clean, they are ready. I left the friands in for a bit too long. This recipe is intended to be moist so if there is a small amount of residue on the skewer it should be fine.

Once the cake and friands have cooled to room temperature (I put them in the fridge to help speed this up) you can apply the ganache. Put the dark chocolate in a bowl and microwave until it just starts to melt. Add some cream and stir well. The chocolate will seize up if the cream is cold but once you stir it the heat from the bowl and the chocolate should make everything melt. Put the ganache in the microwave for a few more seconds to get it smooth, it should look shiny and be runny enough to spread. I usually make ganache using a bain marie setup but this method worked fine.

Put a generous mound of ganache in the middle of the cake and friands and spread outwards. Let the ganache drizzle down the sides, it looks decadent and you can never have too much chocolate! While the ganache is still wet, sprinkle over the pistachios, rose buds and lavender in whatever pattern you desire and gently press it into the ganache so it sticks. If you have holes in the cake or friands from testing with the skewer, strategically fill the hole with ganache and place some pistachio or rose petals over the top.


One Response to “Zucchini, Cocoa, Olive Oil and Walnut Cake Recipe”


  1. My Chocolate Mousse Wins in the Armonia International Olive Oil Competition « gourmetician - December 8, 2012

    […] experimented with my Spanish olive oil in recipes like Zucchini, Cocoa, Olive Oil and Walnut Cake. So by this stage, one question that may be on your lips – how did I make the mousse? The […]

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