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by Lawrence Davis-Hollander
Among certain thrifty gardeners, there is a tradition of using up excess vegetables in cake. You cannot taste the vegetables, but they do add moistness. This recipe for Green Tomato Chocolate Cake is adapted from Garden Way's Red and Green Tomato Cookbook, by Janet Ballantyne.
Serves 12


• 2/3 cup (10 2/3 tablespoons) butter, at room temperature
• 1¾ cups sugar
• 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted
• 2 eggs
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 2½ cups sifted unbleached flour
• 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
• 2 teaspoons baking powder
• 2 teaspoons baking soda
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 1 cup beer
• 1 cup pureed green tomatoes
• 1/4 to 1/2 cup water, if needed
• frosting (optional)


1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9- by 13-inch baking pan.

2. Cream together the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Stir in the chocolate, then the eggs, one at a time. Add the vanilla.

3. Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.

4. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture alternately with the beer and tomatoes. If the batter appears stiff, add the water. (The moisture content of the tomatoes varies.)

5. Turn the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 35 minutes, until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

6. Cool on a wire rack. Ice with your favorite frosting when cooled, if desired, or serve plain. This is a very rich, moist cake.


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