As I shared in my post on signing up for a farm share, we have had more fresh produce to use up than we normally do. It’s also given me an excuse to bake goodies for my coworkers, my neighbors and my husband’s coworkers. (Obviously I eat some, too). Here are some delicious recipes I’ve baked using my farm share goodies this spring and summer. The fresh fruit has meant my sourdough baking has taken a pause, but I’m still feeding my starter and plan to get back to it when fresh seasonal fruit isn’t so tempting!
Fresh Blackcurrant Shortbread Bars from Her Cup of Joy. I’ve never heard of black currants (or currants in any color) used in American cooking – only in English or French style cooking. When we had the chance to try them in our farm share, I figured – why not? These bars are a bit time consuming to make as you need to par bake the shortbread and reduce the currants into a jam prior to baking them all in one, but it is worth the effort. These were tangy while also the perfect buttery crumbly texture. I let them sit out to cool overnight to firm up before attempting to slice and I think they held together better this way.
Sour Cherry Coffee Cake from Whitney in Chicago. One of my favorite types of baked goods of all time is New York-style coffee cake (sour cream cake with a dense brown sugar/cinnamon crumble topping). This wasn’t quite light enough of a cake to compare to that, but the topping was spot on! Sour cherries are an item that we can get fresh from orchards in nearby Door County. The sweet vs. sour flavors really shined in this coffee cake. I sliced it into triangular wedges and shared some with our neighbors.
Classic Strawberry Rhubarb Pie from Beyond the Butter. I’m not new to strawberry rhubarb pies, but I do like to try new recipes each year. This year we received strawberry and rhubarb in our farm share AND we discovered we have two rhubarb plants growing in our backyard (score!). I should have been proactive and cut and froze more of the rhubarb, but I was lazy and only got to freeze about three gallon size bags this year. It was enough to make a few rhubarb recipes at least! I made five pies for freezing. Full disclosure – I do not make my own pie crust – I’m way too lazy for that. I just followed this recipe for the filling and baking information. It was the perfect balance of tangy rhubarb and sweet strawberry.
Applesauce Zucchini Bread from Lovely Little Kitchen. I buy these little aluminum mini loaf pans to gift to neighbors. This applesauce zucchini bread recipe saved me when I had way too much zucchini and not enough oil to make anything without an extra trip to the grocery store. This zucchini bread was a little lighter in texture than other zucchini bread recipes I’ve made over the years (which can be fairly dense).
Chocolate Zucchini Bread from Two Peas and their Pod. (Baked into muffins instead!) Before I really embraced eating vegetables, I used to buy these frozen chocolate muffins with zucchini in them at Costco and pictured myself as the portrait of good health. Well, I still love my baked goods and these chocolate zucchini muffins won the approval of my non-zucchini loving husband. Go figure! I grated the zucchini on our box grater and I swear you cannot tell there is a vegetable in these muffins.
Best Ever Rhubarb Streusel Muffins from The Busy Baker. As I mentioned under the sour cherry coffee cake – I am a firm believer in a butter / cinnamon topping! These rhubarb muffins had just a hint of tang, but were overall sweet. This was my first use of rhubarb for the year and it was a hit with my coworkers.