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Madeira Cake

8oz plain, white flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
6oz butter
6oz caster sugar
zest of half a lemon
3 medium eggs
2 tablespoons of milk or lemon juice
2-3 strips of citron peel (optional)

Line and grease a deep 7 inch cake tin. Sift the flour and baking
powder together and set aside.

Cream the fat and the sugar and lemon zest together until light
and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, adding a tablespoon
of the flour with the last two. Carefully fold in the remaining
flour, then add the milk/lemon juice. Place the mixture in the
prepared tin and bake in a preheated moderate oven at 180 degrees
C, 350 degrees F and Gas Mark 4 for 1 hour. Arrange the citron peel
over the top of the cake and bake for a further 30 minutes. Leave
in the tin for a further 5 minutes to cool and then turn over onto
a wire rack. Makes one 7 inch cake.

Madeira cake is usually eaten plain with a cup of tea or a glass
of Madeira sherry for traditional English "Afternoon Tea", but can
be sliced in half and sandwiched with jam and butter cream or with
fresh whipped cream. It can be iced and is a good recipe for an
English style wedding cake for people who don't like the traditional,
heavy fruit cake, since it is a very firm cake (you can marzepan
and royal ice it just like a fruit cake if you wish). Alcohol such
as sherry can be used in place of lemon juice.


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