Spiced Parnsip Cake by Come Con Ella

December 18, 2014

We've kept you guys well-stocked with the festive essentials in your Christmas veg boxes, but should you be bored of roast parsnips, why not try this parsnip cake by Mehrunnisa Yusuf, who writes the beautiful Come Con Ella blog



I love cakes made with vegetables – be it courgette, carrots, parsnips or beetroot. The latter has a particular affinity for chocolate. I must confess though that I do not care much for a thick layer of frosting especially a crown of sweet cream-cheese that is loved by most everyone. This Spiced Parsnip Cake gains warmth from ground cinnamon and ginger and is made lively with plenty of orange zest. And as if it was not moist enough already, I trickled over some orange juice mixed with honey onto it when just out of the oven. The husband who does not like parsnips had a large wedge with cardamom laced tea. The remains have been much appreciated by my office colleagues.




for the cake

380g parsnips (weighed after they have been peeled and grated)

Zest and juice of a Clementine

350g golden caster sugar

250g flour

2 tsp baking power

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp ground ginger

250ml sunflower/olive oil

4 eggs


for the syrup

1 juicing orange

Two tablespoons honey

Icing sugar to dust



Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease and line a round 28cm baking tin.  

Place the grated parsnips in a large mixing bowl along with the zest and juice of the clementine. Add the sugar, flour, baking powder and spices and mix thoroughly. Beat the eggs and the oil together. Turn on your beaters or cake mixer and add the wet ingredients to the dry in a steady steam. You could also mix the batter by hand but it is a bit of a marathon. You will get a thick batter.

Spoon the batter into the tin and level the top. Place in the oven and bake for 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Make the syrup just shy of the cake being fully baked. Juice the orange. Add the honey to the juice and warm gently to allow the honey to dissolve. When the cake it ready, remove it from the oven and prick the entire surface with a toothpick. Drizzle the syrup over it. Let the cake to cool in the tin as this will allow it to absorb the syrup.

Remove from the tin when cool, dust with icing sugar and serve with tea. A small dollop of crème fraiche would be welcome addition!