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Main | November 2005 »

Rose's Bio

Oct 14, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Publicity

Rose has been called the "Diva of Desserts," "the most meticulous cook who ever lived," and "Legendary Baker." And add this recent accolade -- "If ever there was a cookbook author who could place her hands on top of yours, putting you through the proper motions, helping you arrive at just the right touch, Beranbaum is the one."

Rose was a three time winner of a James Beard Award: for her first book The Cake Bible in both Baking and Desserts, and Book of the Year, 1989, and for Rose's Christmas Cookies, Baking and Desserts, 1991.

The Cake Bible was winner of the NASFT Showcase Award for the cookbook that has contributed most to educating the consumer about specialty foods. A culinary best-seller, The Cake Bible is currently in its 52 printing. It was listed by the James Beard Foundation as one of the top 13 baking books on "the Essential Book List," and was included in "101 Classic Recipes."

The Pie and Pastry Bible, published in 1998, received many kudos including: Food & Wine Books "Best of the Best: The Best Recipes from the Best Cookbooks of the Year" and Coffee & Cuisine "Best Cookbook" award.

Rose's encylopedic book, The Pie and Pastry Bible, 1998, was nominated for a James Beard award. It was also included in Food and Wine's book "the Best of the Best."

Rose's comprehensive book, The Bread Bible, was the 2003 winner of the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards in the Best Bread Book Category. It was listed by Publisher's Weekly and Food & Wine as one of the top ten books of 2003, and by Fine Cooking as one of the top 12. From quick breads, such as muffins, biscuits, and scones, to yeast breads, such as seeded wheat breads, Jewish rye, baguette, and brioche, this is a collection of her favorites, with innovative techniques that will guarantee making a successful bread baker of anyone who so desires.

Rose's Heavenly Cakes, is a return to cakes with a comprehensive four color book for Pam Chirls, Senior Editor at Wiley. It won the International Association of Culinary Professionals Cookbook of the Year for 2010.

Rose's newest book, The Baking Bible, was published in October, 2014 and won the International Association of Culinary Professionals Best Baking Book of the Year for 2015.

Rose's product line, Rose Levy Bakeware, which includes Rose's Perfect Pie Plate and Rose's Heavenly Cake Strip, a silicone halo that produces more even layer cakes, both distributed by Harold Imports.

A luminary in the world of food writing, Rose was a Contributing Editor for over a decade to Food Arts Magazine where "Rose's Sugar Bible" (April 2000) received two prestigious awards: The Association of Food Journalists Award for the Best Food Feature in a Magazine and The Jacob's Creek World Food Award for Best Food Article. She is also a contributor to The Washington Post, Fine Cooking, Bride's, Reader's Digest, and Hemispheres. Rose has been inducted into the James Beard Foundation/D'Artagnon Who's Who of Food and Beverage in America.

An internationally known food expert, Rose also has been a featured presenter in the highly regarded Melbourne Food & Wine Festival and the Oxford Food Symposium.

Rose is a popular guest on major television shows (The Today Show, The Early Show, Martha Stewart, Charlie Rose, The Food Network, and PBS: Master Classes of Johnson & Wales, and Seasonings with Dede Wilson). Rose has taped 13 episodes for a public television cooking series called Baking Magic with Rose Levy Beranbaum. The series started in 2004 on PBS stations across the country and continued for three years.

Rose is currently an instructor for Craftsy with her on line baking classes.

Continue reading "Rose's Bio" »

List of Books

Oct 15, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Rose's Books

Here are a list of Rose's Books:

The Cake Bible

The Bread Bible

Rose's Christmas Cookies

The Pie and Pastry Bible

There are many more: See the rest of Rose's books. You will be taken to Amazon where you can search for and buy any of Rose's books.

Product Line: Rose Levy Bakeware

Oct 15, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Equipment

I'm pleased to announce my association with Harold Import Company. Harold Import is distributing my new line called Rose Levy Bakeware™.

Rose Levy Bakeware™ represents my vision for the ideal bakeware that has been brewing in my imagination for years. I'm proud to offer these new design concepts for you to enjoy in your home.

Rose's Perfect Pie Plate
Rose's Perfect Pie Plate is the first product to be developed and I am very proud of it. It has a deeply scalloped border which effortlessly creates a beautiful crimped crust. Also available is Rose's Sweetheart Crème Brulée. Recipes for my favorite pie crust and three variations of crème brulée are below.

If you are a member of the trade, please contact Harold Import. If you are a consumer, look for Rose Levy Bakeware™ at fine kitchen and gourmet food stores near you. It is also available on line at CyberPantry.com, Fantes.com, and LaPrimaShops.com

Continue reading "Product Line: Rose Levy Bakeware" »

Welcome to My Scratch Baking Blog!

Oct 24, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Announcements

Update 2009: Click here if you want to comment on this entry.

there's a new presence in my vocabulary and it's called a blog. it's not even in the oxford dictionary or on my spell check yet but it has quickly become one of my favorite words! i'm rose levy beranbaum, author of 8 soon to be 9 cookbooks, host of the pbs show "baking magic with rose," and now host of this brand new blog "real baking with rose."

when people ask me what my proudest accomplishment is, without hesitation I tell them it is my connection to the world through my work. since writing the cake bible in 1988 I have received thousands of letters and more recently e-mails with responses and questions. I probably could have written another book in the time it took to answer them all but it was worth it. sharing my recipes, ideas, and stories, I have received so many more in return. is there a better feeling than having touched another person's life in a favorable way? I've met kids who have grown up with cake bible birthday cakes, people who have launched businesses with the recipes, and even a woman in holland who taught friends from egypt how to make my bread recipe so that when they moved to a small town in italy with no bakery they would not be deprived of artisan bread. I recently heard from a woman in samoa who is making my multi-grain bread for her german husband who missed the bread of his childhood. story after moving story--this is the power, immediacy, and joy of the internet to join people from all over the world, enriching our lives and connecting us to the universe.

but just as the sheer volume of correspondence was threatening to overwhelm me and it seemed unlikely that I was going to be able to continue answering each person personally, my kindred baking spirit tim bennett, product manager for gold medal flour, came up with the fantastic idea for this baking blog hosted by general mills. it grew out of our lively e-mails talking about our latest baking adventures and ideas, and new recipes and often proud digital photos. tim thought it would be great to share these baking gems with other interested people as a sort of interactive baking diary. I was enraptured by the idea.

I'm especially proud that my blog is sponsored by general mills because in addition to depending on their flour for so much of my baking, many years ago I was the winner of the general mills betty crocker home-maker of the year award in my high school in new york (music and art). I didn't realize at the time that the prediction of this award now hanging in my kitchen would come true. the certificate says that I possess many of the qualities that would make me a good home-maker, and in fact that was all I ever wanted to be. but I have been fortunate, through my work, to have been able to extend some of these qualities further to the outside world. now, with this blog, I feel I truly have come a full circle. another fortunate coincidence is that my new publisher for my upcoming cake book, john wiley and sons, also publishes the betty crocker cookbooks!

as the purpose of this blog is sharing and extending our baking knowledge and abilities, I invite you to share your baking experiences and to put forth questions. believe me I know what it's like when doing a recipe and something doesn't work and there's no one to go to for the answer. I assure you that if you are wondering about something you are not alone. and if I don't know the answer I'll bet that one of our soon-to-be many blog members will have some ideas on the subject.

of course I will post questions only that seem to be of general interest and will still try to respond to those that are more individual in nature when time allows.

so let me start the ball of dough rolling with a favorite cake recipe which defines the title of my blog: "real baking," and an explanation of why I think it is the only way to bake. (see the blog "why real baking")


Pie Crust Missionary

Oct 24, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Rose's Books

sometimes i wish i could be a pie crust missionary--going around the country showing how fun and easy it is to make one of the most feared of baked goods: a delicious, flaky and tender pie crust--one that rolls out easily, is as malleable as clay, doesn't tear when transferring it to the pie plate, and doesn't shrink when baking.

the main secret to this perfect pie crust is the flour. I learned the perils of choosing the wrong flour when I was on my press tour for "the pie and pastry bible" 7 years ago.

Continue reading "Pie Crust Missionary" »

Ben Franklin & Lisa

Oct 25, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Happenings


I've always thought that september should be the beginning of the year instead of january. january is the quietist month after all the holiday hubbub, but in september new york wakes up from summer hibernation and is at its most event-full!

the top two baking related events for me this september were the beginning of an extensive celebration of ben franklin's 300th birthday in philly and the d.c. launch of my dear friend and colleague lisa yockelson's long awaited, exquisitely written, and magnificently published cookbook: "ChocolateChocolate." it seemed perfectly appropriate that lisa's event came on the heels of the ben franklin one as ben franklin is the muse of writers of all books. after all, where would be without his invention--the printing press!

the benjamin franklin event was held in the franklin institute science museum where many of the city's top bakers prepared desserts that will be featured on their menus during the year long celebration, with themes designed to honor him. only five of them, however, actually entered the official birthday cake contest. the winner was assistant pastry chef jennifer macdonald from the fountain restaurant at the four seasons hotel philadelphia who prepared a cake modeled after benjamin franklin's desk with realistically tinted wood-grained rolled fondant as the wood and feather pen, and green blown sugar apples so perfectly executed that two of the judges (dorie greenspan and i) thought they were real apples. the third judge, roland mesnier, former white house pastry chef, wasn't fooled for an instant as he himself is master of the rare art of blown sugar.

Continue reading "Ben Franklin & Lisa" »

Rose's Favorite Yellow Layer Cake

Oct 26, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Cakes

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Bake 35  to 45 minutes

Makes:  A 1-3/4 inch high cake

The Batter




cool room temperature




4 to 6 large egg yolks (see Pointers for Success)

 2 full fluid ounces

2.5 ounces

74 grams

sour cream

2/3 cup

5.5 ounces

160 grams

pure vanilla extract

1-1/2 teaspoon


6 grams

bleached cake flour

2 cups (sifted into the cup and leveled off)

7 ounces

200 grams


1 cup

7 ounces

200 grams

baking powder

1/2 teaspoon



baking soda

1/2 teaspoon




1/4 teaspoon



unsalted butter
(must be softened)

12 tablespoons

6 ounces

170 grams

Equipment: A 9 inch springform pan, bottom greased, lined with parchment, then greased and floured (preferably with spray that contains flour)

Preheat the Oven: 20 minutes or longer before baking, set an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F.

Mix the Batter
In a medium bowl, lightly combine the yolks, about 1/4 of the sour cream, and the vanilla.
In a stand mixer bowl, with paddle attachment, combine the cake flour, the sugar, the baking powder, the baking soda, and the salt.
Mix on low speed for 30 seconds to blend. Add the butter and the remaining sour cream and mix on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened.
Increase to medium speed, or high speed if using a hand held mixer, and beat for 1 minute to aerate and develop the structure. Scrape down the sides. Gradually add the egg mixture in 2 batches, beating for 20 seconds after each addition until fully incorporated. Scrape down the sides.

Bake the Cake
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Smooth the surface. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean and it springs back when pressed lightly in the center.
Remove the cake from the oven and set it on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Loosen the sides of the cake with a small metal spatula, and remove the sides of the springform. Invert the cake onto a wire rack and reinvert onto a second rack it so that the top faces up. Cool completely before frosting or wrapping airtight.

Finished Height: 1-3/4 inches

Store airtight  3 days room temperature;  1 week refrigerated;  3 months frozen.

Pointers for Success

  • Weigh or measure the egg yolks as they vary considerably
  • Use superfine sugar for the finest texture.  (You can make it by processing fine granulated sugar in the food processor for a few minutes.) 
  • Use cake flour without leavening or bleached all purpose flour.
  • Use unsalted butter for the best flavor. 
  • Use fresh baking powder under 1 year old. 

Adapted from “The Cake Bible”

Copyright 2005 Rose Levy Berenbaum

Weigh to Bake

Oct 27, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Equipment

i can't imagine life without a counter-top scale to weigh ingredients!. if i wrote books or recipes just for myself i wouldn't even include cup measurements. while I'm going out on a limb i might as well admit that given my druthers i would use only the metric system. it's so much easier, faster, and more reliable. can you imagine how crazy-making it is to create and proof all those charts in my books that list each ingredient in volume, ounces and grams! but i've got to cater to those resistant to weighing because as far as i'm concerned, it's better to bake by volume than not to bake at all. and baking makes me happy so i want to share it with everyone.

bakers are born, not made. we are exacting people who delight in submitting ourselves to rules and formulas if it means achieving repeatable perfection. the rewards of this discipline go beyond providing absolute sensory pleasure. there is also a feeling of magic and alchemy that comes from starting with ingredients that don't remotely resemble the delicious magnificence of the final result.

Continue reading "Weigh to Bake" »

Lisa Yockelson's Bittersweet Chocolate Brownies

Oct 30, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Brownies

Makes 16 brownies

When a brownie batter supports little chunks of premium bittersweet chocolate, a delectable thing happens–the small chunks of chocolate form pools of goodness throughout, and the sweet resonates with flavor. Even though I can’t, you should try to restrain yourself from cutting the brownies too soon.

Bittersweet brownie batter




bleached all purpose flour

1 cup

bleached cake flour 1/3 cup
unsweetened alkalized cocoa powder 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon


1/8 teaspoon

baking powder

1/4 teaspoon

bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small chunks

3 ounces

unsalted butter, melted and cooled to tepid

1/2 pound (16 tablespoons or 2 sticks)

unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled to tepid

5 ounces

bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled to tepid 3 ounces
large eggs 5
superfine sugar 2 cups
vanilla extract 2 teaspoons
Confectioners’ sugar, for sifting on top of the baked brownies (optional)  

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Film the inside of a 9 by 9 by 2-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.

Mix the batter
Sift the all-purpose flour, cake flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt onto a sheet of waxed paper. In a small bowl, toss the chocolate chunks with 1 teaspoon of the sifted mixture.
In a medium-size mixing bowl, whisk the melted butter, melted unsweetened chocolate, and melted bittersweet chocolate until smooth. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs until blended, about 15 seconds. Add the sugar and whisk until combined, 30 to 45 seconds. Blend in the vanilla extract and melted butter-chocolate mixture. Sift the flour mixture over and stir to form a batter, mixing thoroughly until the particles of flour are absorbed, using a whisk or flat wooden paddle. Stir in the chocolate chunks.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula.
Bake, cool, and cut the brownies Bake the brownies in the preheated oven for 30 to 33 minutes, or until gently set. Let the brownies stand in the pan on a cooling rack for 3 hours. With a small sharp knife, cut the sweet into four quarters, then cut each quarter into 4 squares. Remove the brownies from the baking pan, using a small offset metal spatula. Store in an airtight tin.
Sift confectioners’ sugar on top of the brownies just before serving, if you wish.

Bake-and-serve within 3 days.

Study The chopped bittersweet chocolate forms creamy pools of flavor in the baked brownies. The following bittersweet chocolates are worth noting for using in the recipe (both for the chunks and melted chocolate):

Valrhona Extra Amer Bittersweet 61% cacao;
Valrhona Le Noir Amer 71% cacao;
Valrhona Le Noir Gastronomie 61% cacao;
Valrhona Caraïbe Dark Chocolate 66% cocoa;
Valrhona Le Noir Gastronomie Chocolat Noir Bittersweet Chocolate 61% cocoa;
Valrhona Grand Cru Noir Manjari Gastronomie Chocolat Noir Dark Chocolate 64% cocoa;
Valrhona Equatoriale Chocolat de Couverture Noir Dark Bittersweet Couverture 55% cacao;
Michel Cluizel Chocolat Amer Dark Chocolate 60% cacao;
Michel Cluizel Ilha Toma 65% cocoa;
Lindt Chocolate Créé à Berne Swiss Bittersweet Chocolate;
or, Lindt Excellence Swiss Bittersweet Chocolate.

Why "Real" Baking

Oct 31, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Ingredients

why i believe in real baking, i.e. baking from scratch as opposed to a mix

i suspect that the two main reasons people bake from a mix is 1) that they think it's faster and easier and 2) it's practically foolproof. there may even be some who grew up with the flavor of a mix and actually prefer it.

i grew up without a cake baking tradition, in fact, my grandmother used the oven only to store pots and pans. there was NEVER anything baked in that oven until I went to the university of vermont, took a course in basic food, and came home thanksgiving vacation with the intention of making my father's favorite--a cherry pie. it was a disaster of melting bubbling soap that I hadn't realized was stored in the broiler beneath. in short, i learned scratch cake baking on my own--from scratch.

Continue reading "Why "Real" Baking" »

Pure Pumpkin Cheesecake

Oct 31, 2005 | From the kitchen of Rose in Cakes

Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Bake for 45 minutes.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Crust







unsweetened pumpkin, preferably Libby’s

1 cup

8.5 ounces

243 grams

sugar, preferably unrefined

1 cup

7 ounces

200 grams

heavy cream

2 liquid cups

cream cheese

2 (8-ounce) packages

1 pound

454 grams

2 large eggs


3.5 ounces

100 grams

2 large yolks


1.3 ounces
(weighed with the shell)

37 grams

Garnish: Pecan halves(*)


1.5 ounces

42 grams

(*) If desired, use an additional 1/2 cup 1.75 ounces/50 grams of coarsely broken pecans for the center

Equipment: One 9-inch by 2 1/2-inch or higher springform pan, greased, outside of the pan wrapped with a double layer of heavy-duty foil to prevent seepage. One 12-inch by 2-inch cake pan or roasting pan to serve as a water bath.

CRUST: 4 1/4 oz. gingersnaps, broken (preferably Swedish brand), 2 oz. pecans, toasted, 1T sugar, 2 pinches salt, 2 oz. butter, melted. Process cookies and pecans, sugar, salt til fine crumbs (app 20 secs.) Add melted butter and pulse 10 times til just incorporated. Press into pan and up the sides.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.
In a small, heavy saucepan, stir together the pumpkin and sugar. Over medium heat, bring the mixture to a sputtering simmer, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring constantly, for 3 to 5 minutes, until thick and shiny.
Scrape the mixture into a large food processor, fitted with the metal blade and process for 1 minute with the feed tube open.

With the motor running, add the cold cream. Add the cream cheese in several pieces and process for 30 seconds, scraping the sides two or three times, or until smoothly incorporated. Add the eggs and yolks and process for about 5 seconds or just until incorporated.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Set the pan in the larger pan and surround it with 1 inch of very hot water. Bake the cake for 45 minutes. Turn off the oven without opening the door and let the cake cool for 1 hour. Remove it to a rack and cool to room temperature (about 1 hour). Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate it overnight. To unmold, wipe sides of pan with towel run under hot water and wrung out. The cake will be 1 3/4-inches high.

Optional Caramel and Pecan Garnish: Arrange the pecan halves around the perimeter of the cake pointed ends out. If using extra pecan pieces, scatter them evenly within the circle of pecan halves. The caramel can be added 6 hours ahead but the cake cannot be covered, as the condensation will soften the caramel.

Pour the caramel into a quart-size freezer weight zip-seal bag (without a “zipper”) or a piping page. Cut a small amount from one corner and pipe the caramel in swirls on top of the pecans.

Caramel Sauce

Take care when making it not to have any small children about and give it your undivided attention. Caramel burns are extremely painful.

Makes: 1 full cup, app 10.5 ounces/308 grams




room temperature





1 cup

7 ounces

200 grams

golden syrup (Lyle’s refiner’s syrup) or caro syrup

1 tablespoon

0.75 ounce

21 grams


1/4 liquid cup

2 ounces

59 grams

heavy cream, heated

1/2 liquid cup

4 ounces

116 grams

unsalted butter, softened

2 tablespoons

1 ounce

28 grams

pure vanilla extract

1 teaspoon



Equipment: 1 heavy saucepan, at least 5 cup capacity, ideally with a non-stick lining

In the saucepan, stir together the sugar, syrup, and the water until the sugar is completely moistened. Heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves and the syrup is bubbling. Stop stirring completely and allow it to boil undisturbed until it turns a deep amber (360°F to 380°F.). Immediately remove it from the heat and slowly and carefully pour the hot cream into the caramel. It will bubble up furiously.

Use a high temperature spatula, to stir the mixture until smooth, scraping the thicker part that settles on the bottom. If any lumps develop, return the pan to the heat and stir until they dissolve. Stir in the butter. The mixture will be streaky but become uniform after cooling slightly and stirring.
Allow it to cool for 3 minutes. Gently stir in the vanilla extract.

For a decorative lacing effect, the caramel pours perfectly at room temperature. For the greatest precision, use a pastry bag with a small decorating tube or zip seal bag with a small amount of the corner cut.

Store: Room temperature up to 3 days; refrigerated at least 3 months.

To reheat: If the caramel is in a microwave-safe container at room temperature, microwave it on high power for 1 minute, stirring twice. Alternatively, place it in a pan of simmering water and heat, stirring occasionally, until warm, about 7 minutes.

Pointers for Success:
After the caramel is prepared, do not stir it too much as this also may eventually cause crystallization. The syrup will help to prevent this.

Variation: Bourbon Butterscotch Caramel: Substitute 2 tablespoons of bourbon for an equal amount of the cream. Add it together with the vanilla extract.

This recipe first appeared in an article I wrote for Fine Cooking Magazine, 2001

Main | November 2005 »

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