Cinnamon and spice scented zucchini bread

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This past winter, I was on a bit of a weekend muffin-making kick. This fall, I’m really feeling breakfast/snack breads. Up first… zucchini bread scented with fall spices. I wanted to make a simple and wholesome version that was gluten-free, moist, and of course, delicious. This fits the bill. And ohh… the smell.

Let me introduce you to a secret ingredient that makes this bread wonderfully fragrant and adds subtle background spice– Penzey’s Baking Spice. This is that special something, that makes people ask “What is in here?” as they gobble it up. It has notes of anise, allspice, mace and cardamom, along with two kinds of cinnamon. Of course, you can use all cinnamon and the bread will be delicious. But if you can get your hands on this, it is so worth it.

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This spice blend is a recent discovery and I’ve been sprinkling it all over the place: apple crisp, oatmeal, lattes and even butternut squash soup. You can also use it in just about any recipe that calls for cinnamon. It’s especially delicious with apple and pumpkin, and I recently used it to great effect in an Italian prune compote– yum.

One word of caution– this baking spice blend is POTENT. Do not replace all the cinnamon in a recipe with baking spice. Instead, cut back on the cinnamon a bit and add no more than a couple shakes of baking spice. I promise you, it will be plenty. Enjoy!

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Cinnamon and Spice Scented Zucchini Bread
Makes 1 loaf as written, but doubles well to make two.

1 cup of grated zucchini (1 small to medium zucchini)
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup millet flour
1/4 cup quinoa flour
1/4 cup almond flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 1/2 teaspoons of really fragrant cinnamon (I used Penzey’s cinnamon blend)
2 shakes of Penzey’s Baking Spice (or add an additional 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon)
1 cup coconut sugar (or brown sugar) plus 2 teaspoons
1/3 cup mild-flavored olive oil (or other vegetable oil)
2 large eggs
1/4 cup buttermilk (or full-fat coconut milk mixed with 1 teaspoon lemon juice)
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8″ x 4″ loaf pan. Squeeze any excess liquid from grated zucchini and set aside.

Whisk flours, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon and baking spice together in a large bowl.

Beat remaining ingredients (except zucchini) on medium low in a stand mixer or whisk by hand in another large bowl.

Add dry ingredients to wet in two additions. Mix until well incorporated. Stir in zucchini.

Pour into prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle with two teaspoons of coconut sugar (or brown sugar). Bake for approximately 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

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