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Christmas Genoa Cake

The second cake from Great British Baking Off’ holidays we handpicked for this season. This time is a Genoa Cake: a typical Christmas Cake with a twist, a lot of tropical flavors and elements to go along with the nuts and dried fruits.

This cake was baked by Mary Berry in one of the Masterclasses for the show, we have used dried plums instead of dried apricots and have substituted the blanched almonds by whole almonds. Also. . . we included a tropical fruit cocktail mix instead of just Pineapple. It worked out just perfect! Cake is absolutely amazing, accommodating changes and letting you experiment. . . Go free!

What to expect: a dense batter, delicious even raw! a lot of fruit and nuts that will make you think something is wrong, it looks like more fruit than batter, but that’s how is supposed to be. Slow bake and delish. . .

Ingredients:
350g red or natural glacé cherries
225g can of pineapple in natural juice, drained 
50g ready-to-eat dried apricots/dried Plums
100g blanched almonds 
finely grated rind of 2 lemons + zest of 1 Lemon / Orange
350g sultanas/cranberries, raisins
250g unsalted butter, softened 
250g caster sugar
5 large eggs, lightly beaten
250g AP flour
75g ground almonds

To decorate:
whole almonds
walnut halves
red or natural glacé cherries
50g whole orange peel
100g apricot jam
colored ribbon (better if is Christmas Colors)

Procedure
-Pre-heat the oven to 325F

-Grease a 23cm deep round cake tin then line the base and sides with a double layer of baking parchment (let the paper in the sides be much higher than the tin)

-Cut the cherries into quarters, put in a sieve and rinse under running water then drain well

-Drain and roughly chop the pineapple, then dry the pineapple and cherries very thoroughly on kitchen paper.

-Snip the apricots into pieces.
-Roughly chop the almonds

-Place the prepared fruit and nuts in a bowl with the grated lemon rind and sultanas and gently mix together

Cream the butter and sugar together in a food mixer unit light and fluffy

-Add the eggs a little at a time, with a spoonful of flour to prevent the mixture curdling

-Fold in the flour and ground almonds. Lightly fold in the fruit and nuts then turn the mixture into the prepared cake tin

-Level the surface and decorate the top with blanched whole almonds, walnut halves, halved glacé cherries and pieces of orange peel

-Bake in the pre-heated oven for about 2 1⁄4 hours or until golden brown.

-A skewer inserted into the center of the cake should come out clean.

-Cover the cake loosely with foil after 1 hour to prevent the top becoming too dark

-Leave to cool in the tin for 30 minutes then turn out, peel off the parchment and finish cooling on a wire rack

-Warm the apricot jam over a low heat then pass through a fine sieve.

-Brush the warm apricot jam over the top of the cake and wrap ribbon around the sides

Enjoy! and start being Merry!

Mix of Fruit, Nuts and Lemon and Orange Peel+Zest
ready to bake, parchment paper
a slice!
*Drain your fruit as much as possible so it does not sink to bottom of cake
the cake

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