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Spiced parsnip and carrot cake


Serves: 10
timePrep time: 50 mins
timeTotal time:
Spiced parsnip and carrot cake
Recipe photograph by Martin Poole

Spiced parsnip and carrot cake

Melissa Hemsley shares her recipe for parsnip and carrot cake with ginger and walnut icing. This cake can easily be made gluten free by using gluten-free baking powder and oats

Serves: 10
timePrep time: 50 mins
timeTotal time:

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Nutritional information (per serving)
Calories
534Kcal
Fat
42gr
Saturates
18gr
Carbs
26gr
Sugars
19gr
Fibre
4gr
Protein
12gr
Salt
0.9gr

Melissa Hemsley

Melissa Hemsley

Melissa is one half of Hemsley + Hemsley - the business she set up with her sister Jasmine, which pioneered healthier modern cooking. She has written four books, has a newspaper column and has grown a large following on social media
See more of Melissa Hemsley’s recipes
Melissa Hemsley

Melissa Hemsley

Melissa is one half of Hemsley + Hemsley - the business she set up with her sister Jasmine, which pioneered healthier modern cooking. She has written four books, has a newspaper column and has grown a large following on social media
See more of Melissa Hemsley’s recipes

Ingredients

  • 5 medium eggs, separated
  • 125g soft salted butter, plus extra to grease
  • 2 tsp baking powder - use gluten free if required
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom (from about 30 pods)
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground allspice, nutmeg or cloves
  • 75g rolled oats, blitzed briefly to make a flour, or buckwheat flour if required for gluten free
  • 125g ground almonds
  • 50g walnuts or pecans, roughly chopped
  • 80g dried fruit mix (such as sultanas, currants, raisins, chopped dates)
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 200g carrots (2 medium carrots), coarsely grated and squeezed firmly to get rid of excess water
  • 100g parsnips (1 medium parsnip), coarsely grated and squeezed firmly to get rid of excess water
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 5 tbsp maple syrup
For the ginger icing
  • 250g full-fat soft cheese or thick-set yogurt (strain excess liquid overnight), at room temperature
  • 100g soft unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp very finely grated fresh ginger
  • 2-3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 small orange or lemon, finely zested
For the walnut topping
  • 50g walnuts, pecans or any other nuts
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup

Step by step

Get ahead
Uniced sponges can be frozen. The iced cake keeps for 3-4 days, chilled
  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C, fan 180°C, gas mark 6. Grease and line two 20cm round cake tins with a little melted butter and baking paper. Using an electric whisk or stand mixer, whisk the egg whites on high speed for about a minute until light and fluffy.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the butter, baking powder, a pinch of salt, the spices, oat or buckwheat flour, ground almonds, chopped nuts, dried fruit, milk, carrots and parsnips for around 30 seconds until mixed together. Now add the egg yolks, vanilla and maple syrup and mix again until you have a thick cake batter consistency. Carefully fold in your egg whites until fully combined and you’re left with a loose and light batter.
  3. Divide the mixture between the tins and bake for 25-30 minutes until lightly golden on top and a skewer or sharp knife inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool slightly in their tins for 10 minutes, then loosen and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. To make the walnut topping, mix the walnuts with the maple syrup and a tiny pinch of sea salt, then spread onto a lined baking tray and bake in the oven for about 5 minutes until toasted and sticky. Don’t open the oven to do this while the cake is baking, wait until after the cake is out and cooling.
  5. For the icing, clean and dry the whisk beaters, then beat the soft cheese, butter, vanilla, grated ginger, maple syrup, a pinch of salt and a little of the citrus zest on medium speed in a large bowl for about 2 minutes, scraping down as needed, until very smooth and creamy. It should be sweet and zingy, so taste to see if you need any extra maple syrup or zest. Once the cakes are completely cool, smooth half of the icing onto one of the cakes, then sandwich with the second cake on top of the other. Finish by topping with the remaining icing then roughly chop the sticky walnuts and scatter over the top of the cake, along with the rest of the citrus zest. Slice and enjoy

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