Friday, September 16, 2011

Discovering The Silver Palate Cookbook

Ever since I began food writing more than a decade ago, I’ve heard of The Silver Palate Cookbook. Fellow foodies would talk in hushed, reverent tones about the treasures to be found inside. I would pretend to agree with them, all the while hiding my secret—I didn’t own a copy of the book.

Then I joined the group of food bloggers (see their links below) who are paying tribute to the Gourmet Live list of 50 Women Game-Changers in the food world. Each Friday we post a recipe from a woman on the list, and this week’s selection was Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins, the authors of The Silver Palate Cookbook and owners of the well-known gourmet food shop by the same name that closed in the 1990s.

So off I went to my wonderful local library (any library that also has a coffee shop has to be wonderful!) for a copy of the cookbook. And I’m glad I did. The book is beautiful to look at with vivid color images and an easy-to-read recipe layout. In fact, there were so many recipes I wanted to try, my very own copy of the cookbook is on its way from

Last weekend I went to Missouri to visit my family. Since I wanted to take a dessert for dinner, I chose Bishop’s Cake from the cookbook. The cake is made in a bundt pan and has a pound cake consistency. I just dusted the top with confectioner’s sugar. It tastes lovely as is, but would also be good with a raspberry sauce or as the base for strawberry shortcake. Chocolate sauce would also be a nice addition.

Bishop’s Cake

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing the pan
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus extra for flouring the pan
2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
5 eggs

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and flour a 10-inch bundt pan.

Cream the butter in a mixing bowl and add the sugar gradually; beat until light and fluffy.

Sift the flour and add to the butter mixture. Stir just enough to blend. Add the lemon juice and vanilla; stir well. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.

Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 1 hour. (After 30 minutes, cover the cake closely with aluminum foil.)

When the cake is done, cool in its pan on a cake rack for 20 minutes. Remove from the pan and cool completely.

Here are my fellow food bloggers. Be sure to check them out!


  1. Yum! I'm a sucker for pound cake. Thanks for the recipe :)

  2. Shhh, come over here and let me whisper a secret in your ear...I don't own the cookbook either! But, I think I will also be delving further into it. Great pound cake, what a treat.

  3. The consistency of this cake looks so dense and rich. I love how simple it is I'm definitely going to try this one, maybe with a lemon or orange glaze?