The Famous Silver Palate Apple Cake Recipe ~ Sheila Lukins and Julee Rosso are the dynamic duo that wrote the definitive cookbook of the 1980s, The Silver Palate. The Silver Palate Apple Cake is one of the most beloved recipes from the book, and it just screams Fall.
The famous Silver Palate Apple Cake recipe is a delicious throwback!
Picture this: it’s 1982, Michael Jackson has just released Thriller, the first cd player is sold, Olivia Newton-John tops the charts, Cheers airs for the first time, E.T. is a box office hit, a gallon of gas costs 90 cents, and conversations revolve around Cabbage Patch dolls, Princess Di, and that newfangled invention, the computer. It’s the same year that Sheila Lukins and Julee Rosso publish The Silver Palate cookbook, named after their successful gourmet shop in New York City. It’s destined to become the Joy of Cooking for a new generation. If you didn’t already have this cookbook in the early 80s, someone was bound to give you a copy. 1982 was also the year I got married, and so I definitely had a copy on my kitchen shelf.
Cakes topped with warm glazes were popular in the 80s. But be warned, it makes for a very moist, almost wet interior. In this case it has a kind of apple pie effect.
This is a a lovely cake. It smelled heavenly every step of the way. I would be proud to serve it to guests, and it’s big enough for a crowd. The thing I’m taking away from this recipe is the wonderful combo of apples and brandy—I’m filing it away for the next time I’m baking with apples!
The Silver Palate Apple Cake
- 1 1/2 c. vegetable oil
- 2 c. all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 1 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. ground mace, I used nutmeg
- 1 1/4 c. walnuts, chopped
- 3 tbsp. Calvados, I used brandy because they didn't have one of those cute tiny bottles of Calvados at the liquor store
- 2 c. sugar
- 3 eggs
- 3/4 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 c. whole wheat flour, sifted
- 3 1/4 c. coarse chunks of peeled apple
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons Calvados or brandy
- 1/4 cup sweet cider
- 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream.
- Preheat oven to 325F
- Grease a 10" round cake pan and set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat the vegetable oil and sugar until thick and opaque. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Sift together all-purpose flour, cloves, cinnamon, mace, baking soda, and salt, then stir in whole wheat flour.
- Add the dry ingredients to the oil mixture and blend. Stir in walnuts, apple chunks, and apple brandy. Stir to distribute pieces evenly.
- Pour into a greased 10 inch round cake pan. Bake 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cake rest for 10 minutes, then unmold and pour glaze over warm cake or cut cake and pour glaze over slices. (note: I used a 9 inch spring-form pan and cooked it almost 10 minutes longer)
- To make the glaze, mix the ingredients together in a saucepan, bring to a boil, reduce heat slightly, and cook 4 minutes. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Pour while still warm over warm cake.
Questions and Reviews
your photos are beautiful! I love the giant chunks of apples and the whipped cream! Im going apple picking tomorrow so I’ll have plenty of apples to make this!
oh, apple cake. i haven’t come across a version yet that i didn’t devour, and from the looks of this one, it’d rank among my favorites! lovely images of a tasty treat. 🙂
Great photos and recipe!
I don’t recall when I last checked out a cooking book for a recipe. Most of the time I get on the internet and find something that will suit what I currently have in my kitchen.
Well, I suppose I probably had other things on my 7-year old wish list in 1982…but boy would I have loved somebody to have made me this cake! It’s seriously beautiful…so thick and moist. Bookmarked!
Your apple cake looks fabulous, Sue. What a perfect choice from Silver Palate….right in tune with fall. I’ve never made this and will now put it on my list. I adore moist cakes like this.
I, too, love your photos! That cake was a bane to me over the years, it was always too moist for me … but unlike you, I worshiped The Silver Palate Cookbook – no diet foods in there! Yes! Long ingredients list, but I so love so many of the recipes between those covers! I hear you, though. Some books speak to your cooking style and others are just ‘meh’! You’re wise to make room for more that excite you as a cook!
Great post, Sue!
This looks so delicious. I’m a huge fan of apple cake and how moist it always is! I’ve never heard of the Silver Palate cookbook, but now you’ve intrigued me and I might just check it out (even if it didn’t work out for you) 🙂
Sue, this cakes looks delicious and perfect with my cup of coffee right this very minute! I love all your photos and styling! I can practically see your eggs coming to room temperature. As I was reading through your post I kept thinking the same thing about the book. Recipes seemed long and lots of steps. I actually had to go over to my cookbooks to see if my copy of Silver Palate made the cut when we moved 2 years ago. And just like you….It did not.
Now that cake looks super moist, perfect for the fall.
I won’t tell you that 82 also happens to be the year I was born 😉 this is a beautiful looking cake. I can’t wait to start whipping up apple creations soon 🙂