There I was foraging wild food last week and I’m at it again now, this time it’s closer to home, actually in the fridge. It’s the one in the utility room which is often neglected and has needed a bit of a sort for a while, naturally out of sight out of mind. When I finally tackled it I was very pleasantly surprised by the harvest it yielded, not least by the large parsnip crop I found safely gathered in. However though it’s dull and dricht out in the world I am not one bit inclined to chow down any time too soon into a dish of roast veg, so I decided to magic them into a cake.
Perhaps unusual using parsnips in a cake, it’s blissful, soft, lemony, very lightly spiced and surprisingly moist. The best thing is it sits under the dome on the table and doesn’t go stale, great for at least 5 days! It can be inclined to dip which is why I opted for reducing the baking temperature half way through to bake it for longer.
- 300g parsnips peeled and grated
- 2 lemons
- 1tsp ground cinnamon
- 2.5tsp ground mixed spice
- 2 medium eggs
- 225ml sunflower oil
- 1.5tsp vanilla
- 125g yogurt
- 280g caster sugar
- 325g self raising flour
- 1.5tsp baking powder
- 0.75tsp bicarbonate soda
- 0.5tsp salt
- 175g sifted icing sugar
Line a 23cm loose base cake tin with bakewell paper
- In a large bowl whisk together the eggs and sugar. I use an electric hand held mixer and while I whisk I dream about the mixer I will have one day.
- When the mixture is pale, fluffy and thick, gradually whisk in oil.
- Grate the zest from the two lemons and stir into eggs along with parsnip.
- Sift flour with spices, salt, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder.
- Stir the yogurt into the parsnip mixture followed by the sifted flour. The mixture will be very stiff.
- Put into prepared cake tin and spread level with the back of a spoon.
- Put cake into oven and after 20 minutes reduce heat to C170.
- Continue baking for a further 20 min then check to see if it’s done. It is cooked when the cake springs back when pressed in the centre. If not quite ready bake for another 5 mins. If the top looks like it is browning too much cover with paper before returning to the oven.
- To make the icing squeeze juice from the lemons then stir 5tbsp into sifted icing sugar. beat with a hand held whisk to get rid of any lumps. It should be runny and not to thick.
- Take the cake out of the oven leave in the tin to cool for 10 mins. Then pour over icing. Once iced finish cooling the cake in the tin.