A Medieval cake favourite reimagined '“ Lawrence Murphy

While cycling through Hampshire I've tasted quite a few different cakes with my coffee at countryside cafes and carrot cake seems to be a big favourite.Â

Wednesday, 24th October 2018, 4:58 pm
Updated Wednesday, 24th October 2018, 6:05 pm
Lawrence loves to stop off for cake while riding in the countryside

No one is quite sure exactly where the recipe originates but most agree it probably comes from carrot pudding from Medieval times. 

Sugar and sweeteners such as honey were very expensive during this period and sweet carrots were used instead.

 With this in mind I wanted to cook something as moist as carrot cake but with another vegetable. 

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise


170ml olive oil

200g brown sugar

2 eggs

1 yolk

200g spelt flour or wholemeal

1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Pinch baking powder

200g peeled and grated parsnip

Knob fresh ginger chopped


1. Put the olive oil, sugar, eggs and yolk into a large bowl and beat together.

2. Add the spelt flour, bicarb and baking powder and carry on beating.

3. When the mixture has come together to form a thick batter add the ginger and parsnip.

4. Put the batter into a lined tin loaf and bake in a pre-heated oven 180c gas 4 for 50 minutes to an hour.

5. Check the cake is cooked by inserting a skewer which should come out clean. 

6. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before taking out of the tin and placing on a cooling rack.