Parsnip Cakes

Parsnip Cakes

Makes 2 cake loaves


The foundation of a great-textured cake is the precise measurement of ingredients. The Dual Platform Digital Scales can measure as small as 0.1g increments to help ensure that your cake mixture comes out exactly as you want it.

For the parsnip puree
500g parsnip, peeled and cut into medium-sized cubes
175g unsalted butter
1 Tbsp white caster sugar

For the cake
450g golden caster sugar
345g grapeseed oil
270g whole eggs, medium (approx. 5-6)
210g plain flour
900g ground almonds
60g cornflour
1 ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 ½ tsp baking powder
1 Tbsp mustard powder
1 tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp ground star anise
reserved parsnip puree
210g grated parsnip
300g walnuts, roughly chopped

For the praline
200g walnuts
450g golden caster sugar
pinch ground cardamom
pinch ground ginger
pinch ground star anise

For the cream cheese frosting
100g unsalted butter, softened
80g icing sugar
250g cream cheese
50g honey
20g Dijon mustard

Make the parsnip puree by placing the parsnip, butter and sugar in a wide bottomed pan. Cook for 30 minutes over moderate heat, shaking the pan regularly to ensure even cooking. Use a slotted spoon to remove the cooked parsnip and spread out on a tray lined with kitchen paper to drain. Transfer the parsnips to a tall container and blitz using a hand blender until smooth. Cover and set aside to cool completely.

To bake the cake, preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease and line two 22 x 33cm, 6cm deep rectangle loaf tins with parchment paper. In a stand-up mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the sugar and oil. Add the eggs and continue to mix at medium speed until light and creamy.

In the meantime, sift the rest of the remaining ingredients (apart from the parsnip puree, grated parsnip and walnuts) together and set aside. Add the parsnip purée to the bowl of the mixer and mix until well combined. Remove the bowl from the mixer and fold in the grated parsnips and the walnuts. Fold in the flour mixture and pour into the prepared tins. Bake for 35–45 minutes or until golden brown and a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Remove the cake from the tins and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.

For the praline, preheat the oven to 180°C. Spread the walnuts out on a baking tray and toast in the oven for 10 minutes. Place 200g of the sugar and 75g water in a pan and place over a medium-high heat until the sugar dissolves and the liquid becomes a dark-brown caramel. Add the toasted walnuts to the pan and stir until the nuts are coated. Pour the mixture onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper and allow to cool. Once hardened, transfer the praline to a sandwich bag and bash with a rolling pin to break it into smaller pieces. Combine the cardamom, ginger and star anise and add to the praline to season. Set aside until needed.

Make the cream cheese frosting by creaming together the butter and icing sugar in the bowl of a stand-up mixer fitted with a paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Switch the paddle for the whisk attachment and add the cream cheese, honey and mustard, mixing until well combined.

Once the cake has cooled, spread the frosting on each cake and garnish with the praline.