Today, just 2/3 of the way through August, it feels and smells like fall.  A nice dampish 45 degrees at 10 am.  It’s nice to settle the smoke from fires all over the west. We’ll enjoy it while we can.

Randy is out splitting and stacking wood in preparation for winter weather.

I decided to clean out the freezer above the fridge last night as well as use up two sorry looking apples, to make a fall themed and flavored cake.

A number of years ago, our oldest son, Flint Selby, a retired Navy chef, gave me a recipe he’d put together after a lot of trial and error, that makes a great large batch of bread or cake. Since he was feeding a family of 9 at the time, it was a good fit for them.  For us, it makes a large enough batch that I can put some in the freezer for when I don’t have the inclination, time or ingredients on hand to bake.

His recipe calls for 5 ¼ cups of zucchini but he told me I could use anything else.  In the past I’ve used just zucchini, or just apples or applesauce or bananas  I’ve used finely ground carrots.  Pineapple.  Combinations.  And EVERY single one of the cakes [as that is what I do 99% of the time instead of bread pans] turns out great!

Last night I put the 2 old apples, a bag of frozen cranberries, a quart bag of sliced zucchini, 3 grated carrots and finally to get to the 5 ¼ cup mark on my Vitamix, a huge dollop of applesauce.     It is scrumptious!!

Here is Flint’s recipe. Following it, I’ve made a few suggestions on the changes I’ve made with, as always, good results.  For me that is a biggie! It is forgiving.  Change it up, it still comes out great unlike a lot of recipes.




Wet items:

6 large eggs beaten well

1 cup veg. oil

1 cup extra virgin olive oil

5 ½ cups grated raw zucchini or substitutions to make the same volume

3 tsp. vanilla

Add these dry ingredients to wet:

1 T. cinnamon

½ t. nutmeg

½ t. allspice

Mix well and set aside.

Dry items:

1 t. baking powder

2 ½ t. baking soda

2 t. salt

4 cups sugar

6 cups flour.

Mix together dry ingredients.

Optional to add:

White chips, chocolate chips, raisins, cranberries, unsulfured coconut flakes, banana chunks, walnuts or pecans. {Coat lightly with flour and they won’t congregate at the bottom of the pan. 2-3 cups seems to work well for me.}

Mix wet and dry ingredients until blended and smooth.  You need a BIG pot to do this!

Flour and grease about 5- 8 bread pans if you want bread form [depending on the size] or use two 13×9” pans, use pan spray.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour.  I generally turn pans around at 45 min. and bake an additional 10 minutes.


Instead of zucchini you may use the following: bananas, pumpkin, grated or puree; crushed pineapple with juice drained; partially cooked sweet potato chopped fine; finely grated carrots with or without drained pineapple; finely chopped apples with apple sauce. Blueberries [it does make a grey batter!] cranberries, sauerkraut.  Combinations.  Use your imagination!

**I’ve subbed 1 cup butter or 1 cup shortening in place of veg. oil, be sure it is very soft, works well.

I add 1-2 cups bananas or applesauce to replace an equal amount of sugar, or even use ¾ cup of molasses for a cup of sugar.

At one time I read the sugar can be cut in half in most recipes and still turn out fine. That works but it’s a bit drier.

And I’ve used 2 T of pumpkin pie spice for any of the recipes in place of listed, as I found I had way too many jars of the spice to just use for pies!

Enjoy plain.  Or topped with whipped cream.  Or with peanut butter.  Frosting of your choice. Butter and jelly.

I divide one cake in half.  Wrap in Saran Wrap, then in freezer paper.  Mark and place both in a gallon freezer bag.  It can last 6 months or longer in theory, but it never seems to stay in the freezer that long for me to prove it!