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  1. Traditional Honey Cake of Madeira /trad. Xmas Cake of Madeira !

  2. Bolo de Mel da Madeira

  3. Excuse my English, please! You certainly will be a little frightened

  4. when you see the quantities. My recipe is the traditional recipe

  5. used since ever in the small villages of Madeira, where the cakes

  6. always were baked at the big common oven of the village, because

  7. nobody had an oven in his house. Because of the big families and the expected visits, but also because the Honey Cake was thought

  8. to be served all over the year, every family had to make several

  9. cakes. Even if today the common ovens are less used, I left the

  10. big quantities, because it is easy to transform the main ingredients

  11. into smaller portions - I hope. I transformed the metric into American measures, but left the metric in brackets (), for easy

  12. control. Hope you enjoy!

  13. 9 ounces (250 g) bread dough from the baker's shop

  14. 90 ounces (2 1/2 kg) flour

  15. 35 ounces (1 kg) sugar

  16. 26 ounces (750 g) "banha", this is pork fat

  17. 17 ounces (500 g) butter

  18. 1 ounce (25 g) erva-doce, this is anise herbs, mashed and sifted

  19. 1 3/4 ounce (50 g) canela, which is cinnamon

  20. 1 ounce (25 g) cravinho da india, which are cloves in powder form

  21. 17 ounces (500 g) walnut, cut into halves

  22. 9 ounces (250 g) almonds, grinded in the cutter

  23. 1 3/4 ounce (50 g) candied lemon peel, cut into cubes

  24. 60 ounces (1.8 lt) pure honey

  25. 5 Tablespoons of bicarbonate of soda, (dissolved in the Madeira Wine)

  26. 1 cup of Madeira Wine

  27. 4 oranges, first srape the skin and keep, then get the juice of them

  28. One day before making the cake buy the bread-dough at the baker's

  29. shop, pass a little bit of flour on the dough, put it in a towel

  30. and keep it in a warm place until next day. Put the bicarbonate

  31. of soda into the Madeira, dissolve. In a pan warm up the honey,

  32. join butter and pork fat (if not available, just use butter),

  33. dissolve. Let this mixture cool down. Sift flour into a bowl, join

  34. sugar, shape a crater and put the bread dough in the middle. Now

  35. work the flour-sugar-mixture into the bread dough. As soon as this

  36. is well joined, start to incorporate little by little the (tepid)

  37. honey-fat-mixture. Join (part of) the candied lemon peel, the

  38. cup of Madeira Wine, orange juce and raped orange skin, anise,

  39. cinnamon, cloves. Incorporate and knead thoroughly until the dough

  40. no more sticks on the bowl. Cover the dough with a towel and put

  41. it into a warm cover. Keep it in a warm place during 3-4 days.

  42. Divide the dough into parts of 250g or 500g or 750 g, depending on

  43. the forms to put into the oven. This cake is made in wide, round

  44. forms which are rather low. Before going into the oven, the cake

  45. is decorated with half-walnuts, sliced almonds and (the rest of)

  46. candied lemon peel. Grease the baking forms, bake about 50 minutes

  47. 355 F (180 C). Let cool down before taking out of baking form.

  48. In Madeira these honey cakes are made on 8 december, the day of

  49. Mary's Conception, because tradition says this cake only is good

  50. for Xmas if it is made on this day... It is custom to make enough

  51. of this cake in order to have some during all the year. Once cooled

  52. down and thouroughly wrapped into vegetable paper it remains good

  53. until next Xmas without loosing quality or taste. Seems a little

  54. bit long, but who knows? I think the cake is so good that it hardly

  55. survives so long ;-))


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