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Christmas fruit cake

Often called pandolce genovese, this may have have been inspired by a sweet bread imported from Persia. The modern recipe calls for zibibbo raisins. candied citron, candied pumpkin, sultanas, aniseed, pinenuts, fennel seeds and orange flower water, with optional pistachios and Marsala wine. It's traditionally served at Christmas, by the youngest member in the family, and sliced by the oldest.

Because it can last for days, it was often taken on long sea voyages.

Text © Dana Facaros and Michael Pauls

Images by: Luigi Rosa