Parsnips add sweetness and moisture to cakes and muffins in the same way that carrots and zucchini do – grate them on the coarse side of a box grater and add them raw. If you like, go all the way and use 2 cups of parsnips in this cake instead of the combo. Either way, the cake is great with cream cheese frosting.
3 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. sugar
1 c. packed brown sugar
1 T. baking soda
2 t. cinnamon
1 t. salt
1 c. canola or other mild vegetable oil
4 large eggs
1 T. grated fresh or 1 tsp. dried ginger
1 T. vanilla
1 c. packed coarsely grated carrots
1 c. packed coarsely grated parsnips
1 c. unsweetened applesauce
1 c. chopped walnuts, pecans, raisins, or dried cranberries, or a combination of dried fruit and nuts
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Spray a Bundt pan or two 9-inch round cake pans with nonstick spray.
In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugars, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the oil, eggs, ginger and vanilla. Add the oil mixture, grated carrots,
parsnips and applesauce to the dry ingredients and stir the batter by hand until almost combined. Add the nuts and dried fruit and stir the batter just until it’s blended.
Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes for a Bundt cake, or for 40 to 45 minutes for a layer cake. The tops should be cracked and springy to the touch, and the edges pulling away from the sides of the pan. Cool the cake in the pan(s) for 10 to 15 minutes, then loosen the edge(s) with a knife, and invert onto a wire rack to cool completely. Makes 1 cake that will serve 16.