Now molasses is not an ingredient that is very much used in Portuguese cookery so I thought that I might have to go somewhere else for my entry this time.
To my surprise, I found this recipe, named literally "Cake from Macao." The usage of the English work Cake in the name of the recipe is a dead give away that probably this recipe was British at one point in time, and just traveled from Hong Kong to Macao and then, as recipes get shared among friends and canasta parties, it ended up being called the cake from Macao.
I was intrigued by the usage of both brandy and anisette liqueur in this cake (I used Napoleon Cortel and Marie Brizard Anisette Liqueur), but the flavours were not discernible in the final product. The blackstrap molasses I used might be the culprit, its intense flavour overshadowing the other subtler flavours in the cake. I will have to try this recipe with a lighter molasses; it might prove to be less overpowering.
The cake is fine textured and very flavourful. The original recipe did not include baking powder but I did add some. Was afraid the cake would be too dense without it.
Cake de Macau
- 200 gr. butter (1/2 cup + 2 tbsp)
- 200 gr. sugar (3/4 cup sugar + 2 tbsp)
- 100 gr. raisins (1/2 cup)
- 100 gr. mixed candied fruit (1/2 cup)
- 250 gr. all-purpose flour (2 cups)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 cup brandy
- 1/8 cup anisette liqueur
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
- 4 eggs
Beat together butter and sugar until you get a pale cream. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the molasses, spirits and mix well. Finally add the flour mixture and mix until blended. Add the fruits.
Pour the batter into a well greased loaf pan and bake for about 50 minutes or until done.