Friends, I’m absolutely thrilled to bring you my first recipe incorporating produce from our very own Country Garden today! While I took a hiatus from publishing new recipes here at JustineCelina, you better believe I continued my testing and development process offline — and I’m returning to these pages more inspired than ever. You see, back in 2020 my amazing Mom and I embarked on the journey of planting our first (pandemic) garden — something we’d always wanted to do, but seemingly never had time for. Fast forward to summer 2022 and we’ve been fortunate to experience 3 successful gardening seasons full of getting our hands dirty, growing food from seed, enjoying abundant harvests, cooking, baking and recipe making! It brings me great joy to to begin sharing scenes and snippets from our idillic Alberta garden — along with a plethora of fresh, thoroughly tested, plant based, garden-to-table recipes!
Naturally, I wanted my introductory garden-inspired recipe to be a cherished family favourite that I’ve completely revamped to be free of dairy, gluten and refined sugar for those of us with allergies and intolerances — Cinnamon Raisin Zucchini Bread! Deceptively decadent and ultra moist, this comforting, veggie-centric, gently spiced loaf incorporates 2 full cups of zucchini — my absolute favourite way to put overgrown garden goodies to good use. Elevated pantry staples of gluten free flour, golden cane sugar, free range eggs, extra virgin olive oil, oat milk and pure vanilla extract combine with shredded (fresh or frozen) zucchini, sultana raisins, a kiss of cinnamon and a dash of cloves to create a rich, caramelly loaf with a streuselly top. Enjoy a slice with your morning coffee for a nourishing breakfast, or as a satiating afternoon snack alongside herbal tea to fuel your day with plant powered energy!