Strangely enough, you'd think that because we are all such chocoholic family, this would not be one of the most requested birthday cakes, but it is. In fact, one of my sisters asked for it her birthday not long ago and one of my nieces is already agonizing over whether to choose this or a chocolate pudding pie for her upcoming big day in February. This cake is a simple moist wonderful poundcake--truly the best in comfort food. Once you make it, you just might get the birthday request too!
I have no idea why this is called Bishop's cake. Maybe it was some long ago cleric's favorite cake and I can totally understand why. I think I've probably made this cake at least 30 times over the years and it is always consistently delicious and as appropriate as a birthday cake as it is for a special brunch treat. There are only six ingredients and it comes together in a snap, so that makes it kinda perfect. It would be a great cake to have around for the holidays because you can make it a day or two ahead of serving it and it'll still be moist-- the perfect thing to offer overnight guests or people just dropping in to say hello (that is if you can keep your family from cutting off little slices every time they come into the kitchen!!)
Then once you've mixed up all the ingredients it bakes for a little over an hour and comes out in this cute little bundt shape. The outside of the cake is slightly chewy and crisp, while the inside is golden, buttery and fluffy with a slight hint of lemon, so yummy!
You can serve this with ice cream or some chocolate sauce, but purists will like nothing better than a simple plain slice to savor. Wish I had a piece right now!
Prep Time: 15 minutes; Bake Time: 1 hour and 15 minutes
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, sifted
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 eggs, room temperature
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Butter and flour a 10-inch bundt pan.
2. Using an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugar gradually and beat till fluffy.
3. Add flour to batter and mix on low speed just to blend.
4. Add lemon juice and vanilla and mix just to blend. Add eggs one at a time, beating on medium speed for about one minute after each addition and scraping the bowl down as needed.
5. Pour the batter into the pan and smooth the top. The original recipe calls for baking about 1 hour and 15 minutes but mine is always done closer to an hour so start checking at about 50 minutes and bake as long as you need to. Also if you see that it's getting too dark, cover loosely with a piece of aluminum foil at around 50 minutes. Cake is done when a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.
6. Cool in pan on rack for 10-15 minutes and then remove from pan and cool completely on rack.
Note: Recipe adapted from The Silver Palate Cookbook by Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins