Highlights from The Silver Palate and Keeping it Simple


The Silver Palate was THE cookbook when I was just starting to cook for friends and it seemed to have "the perfect" everything. A stand out moment in this book is simply one ingredient, added to one recipe, which utterly transforms the end result not only in taste, but it pretty much guarantees amazing results. That is, adding crushed pineapple, only 3/4 cup, to the carrot cake recipe. This makes the cake guaranteed moist and adds a flavour that nobody identifies in the final product but makes the cake truly extra special. It's a mission to make I have to admit, so this is a special birthday cake in my household, on request only....!

Asking me for my favourite recipe from Keeping It Simple by Gary Rhodes just isn't fair... The reason the book made it into my favourite list is quite...simple! As a confident cook, I don't slavishly follow recipes, however, I do like new ideas and I tend to skim read cookery books to glean inspiration. Anyway, long before the Flavour Thesaurus, Gary's intros to each chapters included "key flavours with..." sections. So when I am lacking inspiration and need to be yanked out of a culinary rut I turn to his book time and again and read only the intros which suggest flavour pairings only, which let me go off and experiment. I really enjoy that moment of trust Gary gave to his readers.