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The Story of The Cake Bible--A Baking Classic

Mar 15, 2017 | From the kitchen of Rose


My wonderful editor Cassie Morgan Jones, at Harper-Collins, gave me a list of questions to answer about how The Cake Bible came to be a classic and my thoughts about the influence that it has had on my and other people's baking lives:

Congratulations to one of our favorite authors, Rose Levy Beranbaum, whose book The Cake Bible was recently inducted into the International Association of Culinary Professionals Culinary Classics Hall of Fame. This bestselling, definitive cookbook makes cake baking a joy and brings professional-quality baking within reach of home bakers everywhere.

Here is the introduction to the Q & A written by Cassie:

And here is the Q & A for you to enjoy.


Rose Levy Beranbaum
Rose Levy Beranbaum in reply to comment from Peter Nosko
04/14/2017 07:18 PM

Peter! what an absolutely wonderful story in response to mine! i can't tell you enough how much it is appreciated--and to know that the dotted swiss dream was the inspiration for your own wedding cake is so special. thank you so much for your beautiful note.


Peter Nosko
Peter Nosko
04/ 9/2017 02:10 PM

When I was in elementary school way back in the 1960s, we had an annual bake sale. My schoolmates would bring cakes their moms baked and the staff would cut them up and sell them by the slice. Except for my mom's cake. Every year, the teachers would fight and bid over who would get to buy her cake whole and take it home. I was still young when I learned about the secret power of a well-made and well-decorated cake. Once I left home and got my own place, I started baking cakes. I bought my first copy of The Cake Bible in the early 1990s and it changed the way I baked forever. Within a few short years, it started to fall apart from heavy use. I bought a second "show" copy of book a few years later. For several years, I was baking two to three cakes every week in my spare time. Some were gifts for coworkers' birthdays, some were for family (including an elevated, tiered heart-shaped cake over a square cake for my parents' 40th wedding anniversary) and some were for special requests I could not turn down. I usually only charged to cover the cost of ingredients and materials. The Dotted Swiss Dream was the inspiration when I made our own wedding cake in 1998. I've made a fair number of cakes in this book. I made La Porcelaine (the cover cake) twice! In 2016, I bought a 3rd copy during your 2016 Kitchen Specials sale when you offered to sign it-- how could I resist? This is now my special "gold archive" copy. And a month ago, I bought the iBooks version for convenience. It’s always with me now, so I'm covered on all fronts.


When we travel, we frequently hear at events, book signings, and demos of how "The Cake Bible" has touched someone. It has helped entry bakers to establish their own successful baking enterprises, and home bakers to make that special requested cake with no failure.
It touched my life when I picked up my first "The Cake Bible" around 18 years ago. Before it I made a chocolate cake off the back of Hershey's cocoa box and a few out of "The Joy of Cooking." The Chocolate Oblivion, the Yellow Downy Butter Cake, and the All-American Chocolate Cake, became instant requests from friends and family.
Little did I know that my email in December 2003 to then Rose's Cordon Rose website to ask her a couple of questions would be the beginning of a journey through emails and phone calls to my becoming Rose's business associate. Little did I know that I would be in the baking kitchen at Hope today, for our third and successful test of a new flourless chocolate cake. Tonight, I am baking 12 dozen Pepperkakors from "The Baking Bible" to mail to my former T'ai Chi studio for a celebration day festivities.


Rose Levy Beranbaum
Rose Levy Beranbaum
03/17/2017 12:05 PM

Thank you both for your lovely comments!


Terry Baldwin
Terry Baldwin
03/17/2017 08:32 AM

I have worn out two copies of this book, and given it as a gift countless times. This book was the beginning of my baking "life" which has now stretched to many decades. I am a passionate fan of every other book Rose has published since, too. THANK YOU for your devotion to translating the science of pastry into language the home cook can apprehend.


Martha Steward
Martha Steward
03/16/2017 11:44 AM

The Cake Bible was both revelation and inspiration. I still think of it often, long after losing it in a move. After all the anticipation, The Baking Bible serves only as a doorstop.



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