Parsnip Cake & A Cookbook Giveaway

Monday, November 19, 2012


Parsnip Cake _ Slices

In the 156 updates about the new house, here is the latest. A new dining room and chairs were delivered last Saturday turning the new pad into a real home. At least, that's how it feels to me. Seeing this new space where new and visiting friends would now gather and break bread with us truly made me feel peaceful.

Having been brought up among amazing cooks who took every opportunity to gather friends and feed and wine them, and where no Sunday was without a dozen people gathered at the dining room table, I knew the moment of feeling home would truly come when that corner of the house would no longer be empty.

 
Frosting Ingredient

Now, I am deep into looking at new recipes to cook and plan dinner menus for possible dinner parties. I am finally feeling a sense of being settled and started unraveling the cookbooks, the food stories, the imagery I had to set aside this whole summer and early Fall because of all the cacophony happening in my life.

It felt a bit strange to spend Sunday doing things just for me. Well, for the house really. I built some shelves, took care of the giant pile of leaves on the back deck, and did all the mundane things plenty of people do on a Sunday. Coffee and the newspaper in the morning. A walk in the park in the afternoon. Laundry, vacuum. Sundays were never completely mine as a freelancer. There was always a file to edit, a folder to send, a lot of backing up to do. And I admit, I am digging a good Sunday now...


Parsnip Cake _ Whole

Especially one that starts and ends with cake. A Parsnip cake to be exact. Think Carrot Cake but with parsnips instead. Not something this Frenchie would have ran to make had I not met the cookbook author behind the recipe, just very recently.

 Meeting famed New Zealand cookbook author Julie Le Clerc was one of the highlights of the workshop I taught in Charleston last week where she was an attendee. Getting to know her personally, her food philosophy and realizing how much of a hard worker she is (writing, styling and shooting each of her books - all 14 of them), kind of made me fall even more with her recipes. Beside the fact that she is lovely, generous and humble in person...I did own a couple of her books prior to meeting her but had not spent enough time cooking from them.

 
Sunday Baking

After a great weekend of photo workshop alongside Julie and a dozen other talented women, I could not wait to get back home and take out her books from that big box staring at me since I had arrived in Birmingham. She definitely created a good cake when she included that recipe in her book, Julie's Favorite Cakes. The thing is, it does not taste "parsnip-ish" at all. Instead the mild flavor lets you enjoy the pineapple and frosting a lot more than if it had been carrot. I am definitely sold on the concept!

 I realize that some of you may not know Julie and her recipes very well. To remedy that, I am giving away a copy of her latest book, Made By Hand. She brought a copy with her to the workshop and it is stunning. The design is lovely, the photography is superb and the recipes tempting. There are also icons with each one guiding you in your choice if you are vegetarian, celiac or grain free, without being necessarily geared toward one food choice over the other.

It makes cooking for friends that much easier...!


Parsnip Cake _ Slices

To enter the giveaway and throw your name in the hat to win a copy of Julie's book, just leave a comment at the bottom of this post between today, Monday November 19th and Friday November 23rd at midnight, central US time. One entry per person, no anonymous comment will be eligible. The lucky winner will be announced in a follow up post next week.



Parsnip Cake, very slightly adapted from Julie Le Clerc's recipe

I had enough batter to fill a 8-inch round and a 6-inch round baking dish.

Cake:
1 cup sugar
1 cup olive oil (original calls for 1 1/4 cups vegetable oil)
1 tsp vanilla
3 large eggs
1/2 cup crushed pineapple, drained
4 cups grated parsnip
1 1/3 cups flour (I use Jeanne's gluten free flour mix - it works with every recipe!)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup dried cranberries (original calls for currants)
2 tablespoons ground cardamom (original calls for cinnamon)

Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease a 10-inch baking pan.
Whisk together sugar, oil and vanilla in a medium bowl.  Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the pineapple.
Place grated parsnip, flour, salt, baking soda, cranberries and cardamom in a large bowl.  Pour in the wet mixture, stir well to incorporate. Spoon cake mixture into prepared pan.  Bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean.  Once cold, cover with lemon cream cheese frosting.

Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 cup cream cheese, softened
50 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup caster sugar
grated rind and juice of one lemon

Beat all ingredients together until creamy.  Spread over cake.

266 comments:

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Marina said...

Your cake looks very tasty! I just adore all cakes and especially some interesting ones!

Marina

Priya Sreeram said...

lovely recipe and the cake looks delish; bookmarking it ! Is the giveaway worldwide ? If so count me in. Thanks for sharing.

Irene Zuccarello said...

I always LOVE the photos and the recipes you publish. Amazing for the eyes and the heart!!

This book looks wonderful, good luck all!

Cheers from Italy :)

Teresa said...

I must test recipes with parsnips. Lovely giveaway¡¡

Susan said...

Never heard of parsnip cake but makes total sense. Thanks for opening my mind!

Heidi said...

The cake looks awesome! Can't wait to try out the recipe.

Iva said...

reading your blog , seeing all the beautiful pictures is such an inspiration to me ! I would love to have that book !

allie said...

What a treat your workshop must have been.
Julie's food philosophy sounds perfect. I never would have dreamed up a parsnip cake, but your description makes me anxious to give this a try.

Becky said...

Love the idea of a parsnip cake!

Cynthia Flores said...

Love your blog and all the beautiful pictures with recipes!!!

Steeno said...

Awesome! Thanks for the giveaway :)

Teri S. said...

Parsnip cake...I'm definitely going to have to try that! I'm glad you are settling into your new house and job. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Florence said...

Parsnip is a royal vegetable, so good and so versatile. Carrot, beetroot, parsnip? Vegetable cakes = super tastiness.

Laura said...

Looks so yummy! Can't wait to try it!

Laura Wagoner said...

Sounds yummy! Great pictures, too! Can't wait to try the cake!

Charlette Finley said...

Oh my I wish I had been blog hopping sooner. I would have made this beautiful cake for Thanksgiving! But I used my parsnips already. But I will be trying this very soon. Thanks for the chance to win a NEW cookbook.

Kim Garceau said...

This cake looks lovely and the book too!

Katy Penrod said...

I've only ever had parsnips in a savory preparation, this looks yummy!

Moni said...

Yummy, I must try this recipe, I don't like carrots and I love carrot cake, Im sure with this it will happen the same.Thanks for the link to Jeanne's flour.
Love your photography book! It's on my shelve

Julia P said...

Gorgeous cake! Thanks for the give-away - I'd love to be the lucky one to win the cookbook!

xuxu said...

Your cakes and recipes are always amazing!!! I am starting my own blog too. Always hope to take such great pics like yours someday

Jocelyn + Cathy said...

hehe the eggs look so pretty! never thought of parsnip cake before!

Cathy said...

i think it's time to go buy some parsnips...hahha :D

milliestar said...

So neat to see a Kiwi cook mentioned on your blog - i'm a Kiwi and have been a huge fan of Julie's for years. This cake sounds sensational!!

Alexia Parada said...

Helene we need Parsnips in Mexico! I will love to do this recipe!

Cailin Swarm said...

The cookbook sounds lovely!

Sara H. said...

Made By Hand looks like an excellent cookbook! I love all of your recipes! Thanks so much for the giveaway!

kellygreene1978 said...

That cake looks yummy!

Andreea said...

too bad my parsnips went bad before I saw this recipe, it sounds delicious!

queencake and titangirl said...

thank you so much for the giveaway!i looooove cookbooks and this one sounds great.best from berlin,anja

Tori said...

To be honest, I have never made a cake with any vegetable beisdes carrot, so this post was a somewhat surprise for me, but I think I'll try it; it'll be a nice change. And as always, your pictures are gorgeous.

Simo said...

Passare da te รจ sempre un piacere...posso partecipare anche io al Giveaway?
Un carissimo saluto da Simona

Dulces Triple A said...

Me encanta, un beso

Anonymous said...

Parsnip cake is so inventive! Can't wait to try it.

darcilyn@gmail.com

Lin K. said...

An interesting idea for parsnips!

I'd like to enter the giveaway as well, thanks! :)

Ruth Parson said...

And here I thought French fried parsnips took the cake! Ready to bake that parsnip cake for the next celebration.

Patricia from Sabores y Momentos said...

This cake looks amazing!!! I´m definitely trying it, I use parsnip quite a lot in different recipes, I´m sure I´ll love it! The cookbook it´s a wish!

Collette said...

Wow, can't wait to try making it. I grew up planting and growing a garden with my father, He planted almost every vegetable know to man, but I have never had a parsnip cake. Thank you for sharing.
Collette

Becca said...

This cake looks so delicious, I must try it! And what a great giveaway :)

Irene said...

Oh, this cookbook is awesome. And I'd like to have a piece of that cake. Yum!
Greetings from Austria
Irene

norrlandsguldtjej(at)gmail(dot)com

Jen Laceda | Tartine and Apron Strings said...

I'd love to win Julie's cookbook! Please throw my name in the hat :) Fingers crossed!

Sara said...

So interesting! I've never thought of using parsnip in a sweet application!

Magda said...

I've never seen a parsnip cake before. I can't imagine how it tastes, which means that I have to give it a try to find out. Thanks for a wonderful recipe, Helene!

Tracy said...

My husband loves parsnips! I'd love to try this recipe.

Kate Gesel said...

I absolutely LOVE baking with vegetables! This recipe will most certainly be made soon!

Patricia Scarpin said...

I'm a long time fan of Le Clerc's work (her "Little Cafe Cakes" is absolutely wonderful!) and it's great to know she has a new book coming out. Beautiful cake, Helen!

bakingbeardy said...

Not sure what I'm looking forward to more - hearing more about your house or your amazing recipes!

LatteLisa LisaHjalt said...

That is such a wonderful giveaway; I'd love to hold that book in my hands.

Tressie Lynn said...

Love your photography! So beautiful! And this cake looks especially yummy.

Tiffany @ Savor Home said...

Hi Helene! I miss you! It looks like you had another group of talented women the week after I left. So fun! I am also glad that things are coming together at your new home. This cake looks amazing and Im intrigued by the parsnips!

Aunt Cherie said...

I love parsnips so will be trying this cake soon. Thanks for a chance to win Julie's cookbook !!

Pallavi said...

What a wonderful and unusual recipe...beautifully presented - as always. I surely like the use of cardamom over cinnamon - will definitely give it a try. Thanks!

Margaret@KitchenFrau said...

This just sounds so amazing and different I want to try it. What creative thinking.

yen said...

Hi, your blog is beautiful:D. Though I can not bake but looking at your blog makes me feel at peace.Keep on!

Kyle Pratt said...

Thank you for the giveaway

Deborah said...

I'd love to win it, looks lovely. The cake I'm most certainly going to try.

Kate Scalzi said...

& yum. Ready to eat this cake now.

Diane said...

The book looks beautiful!
dwmarks33@comcast.net

Dame Durden said...

How did I not think of ever using parsnips in a cake??? I love parsnips, turnips, carrots--give me a root vegetable or tuber and I'm happy! This is great and I will definitely try it very very soon.

Anna said...

I know it's a bit ambitious as far as student food goes, but I can't wait to try it! And I'd love to win the book.

mimi said...

fabulous recipe. and your photography - WOW!!!!!

Lorraine Joy Alegria-Vizcarra said...

The cake looks wonderful.

isra said...

I bet this is very yummy! ;)

Lesley said...

Having made this cake before, I can testify that it is absolutely delicious. Anyone worried about using parsnips, forget it and just bake it. Way better than carrot cake - it just needs a more appealing name! Having met Julie recently, I can also agree with you on how lovely she is - genuine and kind.

yengbamboo said...

lovely!

jasminecurtney said...

thank u for sharing this to us!

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