Recipe: Pear & Parsnip Cake with Salted Caramel

Parsnip & Pear Cake with Cream Cheese Buttercream and Salted Caramel.

This recipe makes two 20cm cakes. To make the Easter cake I made in this post , I doubled the recipe and made 4 layers. 

Serves 8

For the cake 

175g butter 

250g demerara sugar

100ml maple syrup 

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 large eggs 

250g cake flour

1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp mixed spice

1 tsp cinnamon

Pinch of salt

250g parsnips, peeled and coarsely grated ( 1 extra parsnip for the parsnip chips)

1 firm pear, cored and diced 

100g pecans , roughly chopped

For the caramel

150g white sugar 

1/4 cup water 

90g cream

30g butter 

Big pinch sea salt 

For the buttercream 

100g unsalted butter, room temperature

200g full fat cream cheese, room temperature

300g icing sugar, sifted 

zest of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon lemon juice

For the parsnip chips 

1 whole parsnip, washed


Heat oven to 180C/160C fan Grease 2 x 20cm sandwich tins and line the bases with baking parchment. 

Melt the butter, sugar and maple syrup in a saucepan over gentle heat, then cool slightly, add the vanilla extract>
Whisk the eggs into this mixture. 

Sift the dry ingredients together and stir into the egg mixture followed by the grated parsnip, pear, and chopped pecans.

Divide between the tins, then bake for 25-30 mins until the tops spring back when pressed lightly and the cake has pulled away from the sides of the tin.

Cool the cakes slightly in the tins before turning out onto wire racks to cool completely.

While the cake are baking make the caramel.

To make the caramel; Place sugar and water in a small pot over medium heat. Cook the caramel until it reaches an amber colour; immediately remove it from the heat and whisk in the cream and butter and a big pinch of sea salt. Set aside to cool.

To make the parsnip chips; using a veggie peeler and cut lengths of parsnip and place the strips on a baking sheet. Cook for 10 -15 minutes in a preheated oven ( 180oc) until crisp and dry. Dust with icing sugar and use to decorate cake.

To make the buttercream; Beat cream cheese and butter in large bowl until smooth. Beat in the lemon zest and juice  and gradually add the sifted icing sugar and beat until the icing is smooth. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.) Note – it is important that the cream cheese and butter are at the same temperature, preferably room temperature and soft.

To assemble:

Spread the icing over the top of one of the cooled cake, and spread the caramel over the icing. Sandwich the second cake onto of the icing and caramel layer and decorate with icing, caramel and parsnip chips dusted with icing sugar.




Recipe adapted from BBC Good Food

Styling & Photography Taryne Jakobi

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