What’s on my plate: parsnip & lemon loaf cake

I had this post all planned…an account of making lasagne, following this fantastic recipe from Nigella Eats Everything. However, I was interrupted mid-ragu-making by the news that Charlie had been found, and all other things went out of my mind. Despite the welcome distraction, I would say that it was the best lasagne I have ever made. Do check it out (and yes she does use Marmite….).

Anyway, the spring weather is, well, not very spring like today, so instead of going into town, I decided to bake. In a book I know I have featured before, Lagom by Steffi Knowles-Dellner, I found this parsnip and lemon loaf cake. Parsnips in a cake you exclaim…but really, as she says, how different is this to using carrots or beetroot?

The cake also contains poppy seeds, for a bit of extra sparkle. It is a simple recipe using vegetable oil and yoghurt, so no need for anything more than a wooden spoon or spatula for stirring the mixture. I popped up to our local shop for some parsnips and more lemons, then set to work. The most tedious part is grating the parsnips, but just put on a podcast and you will get there.

The cake took longer to cook than suggested, and I have concluded that the loaf tin I have is too small as this not the first time I have had this problem using this particular object. I now have a perfect excuse to go to a kitchenware shop to find a larger one.

Anyway, to the taste test. First of all, it is an extremely light and fluffy cake, bursting full of lemon flavour. You wouldn’t know there was parsnip present, but once you know you might ask what else is in the cake. This is one to make again – in parsnip season – as it is so easy to make and tastes good.

I found a copy of the recipe online here.

This well be entered in the What’s on Your Plate blog challenge hosted by Canadian bloggers Widow Badass and Retirement Reflections. This goes live on the first Wednesday of each month and you can join in too with a food related post, just by adding yours to their linkup.

Thistles and Kiwis is a Wellington, New Zealand based blog written by Barbara, who likes cats, summer, good food and pretends to garden.

You can find Thistles and Kiwis on Facebook, and also on Instagram @thistlesandkiwis.  As for Twitter….am totally inactive these days.  If you want to get in touch, email me on thistlesandkiwis@gmail.com


  1. I don’t often see parsnips for sale here, but the look (and description) of your loaf makes me think I should keep my eyes wide open for some.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi, Barbara – If you are not already a professional food photographer, you definitely should be. Your recipe and ingredient photos always make me want to reach through my screen and help myself. Your parsely and lemon cake looks especially divine!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Parsnips are an interesting addition for a cake but having used zucchinis in cakes before I am now confident not to be surprised by anything! Looks delicious 🙂 I agree with Donna, great photos too!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. An exciting loaf (you know how I love loaf cakes!).
    “poppy seeds … for that extra bit of sparkle” – yes!
    We don’t get parsnips much here in Singapore and I imagine replacing it with carrots wouldn’t have the same effect – the colour of the cake would certainly be different.

    Liked by 1 person

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