I decided to use gluten-free oat flour as in the original recipe. Oat flour is a good choice. It makes a great stand alone replacement for wheat flour, and as long as the oats are gluten-free, it's a flour that we both can enjoy. I will probably make another version of this recipe soon without oat flour for those who are sensitive to oats, too. (When I first starting eating gluten-free, I didn't eat oats for 4 years.) It's nice to have alternatives.
Zucchini contains a lot of water. Oats will retain that water—which is great for binding, but also makes for a heavy, wet, loaf that doesn't rise very high. The top on the original recipe caved in on itself while in the oven and the crumb was very dense like a brownie. I tried two experiments to solve this problem. Both ways were good.
In my first experiment, I replaced some of the oat flour with tapioca starch to lighten the crumb, and I reduced the liquid a bit. The results were good—very tasty, but the cake was very wet from the zucchini and the top collapsed a bit once it cooled. For my second try, I added a bit of psyllium husk powder for structure and squeezed as much water out of the zucchini as I could before adding it to the batter. It didn't rise very much in the oven, but it didn't collapse very much either. The crumb was less dense, slightly less wet, and held together better.
For accuracy, I weighed the flours. I have given you the approximate equivalent volume measurements, but I can't guarantee the results.* You can replace the tapioca starch with an equal weight of oat, millet, or buckwheat flour to make the recipe all whole foods. The psyllium husk powder is optional. Feel free to leave it out if you wish. There was a small difference in crumbliness between the cake with it and without it.
Make sure your cocoa powder and chocolate chips are gluten-free. Hershey's Unsweetened cocoa powder is my favourite. It's not expensive, and I can find it in most stores. Enjoy Life chocolate chips are a great gluten-free product also free from dairy. Camino chocolate chips are also safe as they made in a dedicated allergen-free facility.
I baked it in a glazed ceramic loaf pan. These pans are great. They never need greasing or lining with parchment paper. Use whatever pan you have, silicone, metal or glass. A smaller 21cm x 11cm (8-1/2" x 4-1/2") loaf pan works best. Be sure to line metal or glass pans with parchment paper before adding the batter.
Make these as muffins, too. Line a muffin tray with parchment or silicone liners and bake for half the time.
*Use weight measurements if you want to replace the oat and tapioca flours with wheat flour. Leave out the psyllium husk powder. 1 cup of all-purpose flour is 120 grams, and 1 cup of whole wheat flour is 140 grams.
makes 1 loaf
1 Tablespoon ground flax seed
3 Tablespoons hot water
120 grams (1 1/4 cup) gluten-free oat flour
60 grams (1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons) tapioca starch
60 grams (1/2 cup) cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon psyllium husk powder (optional)
2 teaspoons baking powder
250 ml (1 cup) non-dairy milk
125 ml (1/2 cup) maple syrup or other sweetener
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
180 grams (1 generous cup) grated zucchini
1/2 cup chocolate chips
In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the ground flax and hot water. Shred the zucchini and squeeze out the water if desired. Set flax gel and zucchini shreds aside while you measure the flours.
Beans and Rice