Although this cake resembles the Italian Christmas cake, Pandolce genovese, it’s still a top British cake, just like the Belgian bun and Battenberg cake. When I was little, my mother sometimes bought a cake in the supermarket with glace cherries and currants in it; I always called it English cake. Genoa cake is a lovely alternative to a richer Christmas cake. It’s nice to decorate the cake with candied fruit that catches the light like little gems. You can find recipes for Genoa cake in many 19th-century cookbooks. They usually begin with a pound cake recipe.
This version is based on
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.
Carefully fold the remaining flour and the baking powder into the batter so that the volume is retained. Fold in the fruit, then spoon the batter into the tin and smooth the top.
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