This cake is named after Madeira wine, a fortified wine from Madeira in Portugal that became popular in England in the mid-19th century. The wine was served to be enjoyed with the cake, just as Vin Santo is served with Cantucci biscuits in Tuscany. One of the earliest recipes was that of Eliza Acton in her 1845 book, Modern Cookery for Private Families. Madeira cake still often appears on the table, although today it is served with a steaming cup of tea rather than a glass of Madeira wine.
Put the butter and sugar in a bowl and beat until creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and make sure that each egg is completely incorporated before adding the next one. Add a teaspoon of the flour with the last egg to prevent the mixture from separating. Stir in the lemon zest.
Carefully fold the remaining flour and the baking powder into the batter so that the volume is retained. Stir in the candied lemon. Spoon the batter into the cake tin and smooth the top.
Allow the cake to
Serve with a cup of
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