Merry Xmas to all blog readers!; Madeira cake competition; Russian Ballet Xmas Day; Blues in Paul do Mar; Xmas Market Night in Funchal; Gigantic window of local products!; Madeira Xmas recipes; EDP privatisation; Troika could admit revision of Portugal’s deficit targets

International, Portugal and Madeira News from Paul Abbiati:

Merry Xmas to all blog readers!

Russian Ballet Xmas Day

8pm Xmas Day – Ballet Gala: Russian Ballet “Christmas Season”, organized by “Paladar à Música – Madeira Congress Centre

Booking:[email protected] / or contact: 918 479 077

Madeira cake competition

Let us know in the comments section how your Xmas Madeira cakes baked!

Blues in Paul do Mar

On Thursday night the Madeira based BLACK DOG BLUES BAND played in Paul do Mar, Calheta.

Image of Paul do Mar fishing village in Calheta region Madeira from Wikicommons

Xmas Market Night in Funchal: Friday 23rd December evening

The longest and most famous night of the year in Madeira’s Funchal City Market is tonight. The Xmas Market ‘The Noite do Mercado’ is tonight the 23rd December.

From the official Tourism website:

“Shopping for the final Christmas gifts on the night of the 23rd is a tradition that leads thousands of Madeireans to the Market streets. In this contagious buzz, numerous tourists are also involved, where you can feel the true spirit of the “festivity”…

Gigantic window of local products

The surrounding streets of the Market are closed to traffic and become a gigantic window of local products display: fruits, vegetables, flowers, sweets and typical drinks from Christmas. At the same time, the bars are opened, turning this occasion into one of the longest and cheerful nights in Madeira…”

Friday headlines in the Portuguese Press

From Portugal Daily View

EDP privatisation

“All the main Portuguese newspapers are carrying news of EDP’s privatisation on their front pages, after the government announced yesterday that China Three Gorges was the winning bidder for the government’s 21% stake in the utility.

Publico Newspaper reports: “China’s Three Gorges was the winning bidder for the state-owned 21% stake of Portuguese utility EDP for €2.7bn.

The Portuguese government has also opened the door to a dispersion of capital in BCP by Chinese banks

Troika could admit a revision of the deficit targets for Portugal

Other main stories include how the troika could admit a revision of the deficit targets.

Madeira Xmas recipes

From the official Tourism website:

Tangerine Liqueur

1 l aguardente (sugar cane rum)
1 l water
1kg sugar
Rinds of 6/7 tangerines (large and ripe)

Finely cut the tangerine rind, with no white so as to not be bitter.
Steep the rinds in the “aguardente” for 15 days.
Once the steeping time has passed, add water and sugar and heat to make simple syrup.
Add simple syrup to the “aguardente”, removing rinds and filtering the liqueur.

It is now ready to serve!

Madeira Honey Cake

Ingredients for the leavening:
500 g unleavened flour
30 g leavening (baker’s yeast) about 3 dl water
Knead the flour with the yeast, make a ball, cover with plastic and let rise for 2 to 3 hours.
Remaining ingredients:
1000 g unleavened flour
350 g sugar
300 g butter
150 g lard
clove (about 1.5 g)
fennel (about 1.5g)
15 g cinnamon
50 g nuts
50 g chopped almonds
lemon zest
400 g mixed crystallised fruit
150 g sultanas
15 g baking soda
juice of 1 orange
8 dl Madeira molasses
2 dl Madeira wine

Baking instructions:
Mix the butter with the sugar until creamy, add spices and juice of an orange and a little lemon zest. Melt the molasses and lard together and add to mixture. Add the flour and baking soda and mix for about five minutes. Add to this dough the leaven previously kneaded and continue to mix for an additional 2 to 3 minutes. Lastly, add the crystallised fruit and mix for an additional five minutes.

Let rise for 24 hours.

Place the dough in greased and wax paper-lined pans (only the bottom of the pan) and decorate the cakes with almonds and nuts on top. Bake them in a 190o degree oven, for 25 minutes.
Honey cake is broken by hand.

NOTE: Use pans with removable bottoms, with a diameter of 15 cm and a height of 4 cm and place dough 3 cm high.

Images from the Diario Newspaper unless stated.

20 thoughts on “Merry Xmas to all blog readers!; Madeira cake competition; Russian Ballet Xmas Day; Blues in Paul do Mar; Xmas Market Night in Funchal; Gigantic window of local products!; Madeira Xmas recipes; EDP privatisation; Troika could admit revision of Portugal’s deficit targets”

  1. What about pestas (excuse the spelling) de bacalhau? Doesn’t anyone make those for Christmas? Delicious!

    Merry Christmas Madeira and hope everyone has a fantastic 2012!


  2. What a great idea by the EU gods.—Let China buy even more assets.
    Portugal’s electricity now in the hands of an agressive Marxist government.
    This proves to me that the EU is an unelected Marxist grouping.
    Oh Dear.

    Happy Christmas and a Healthy and Wealthy New Year to all

  3. Martin This may Interest you, they all at it selling things off . From this is Money..National Grid is poised to sell gas network to Beijing

    The National Grid is poised to sell off its four remaining UK gas distribution networks to the Chinese government early in the new year.
    Talks between the British distributor and the State Grid Corporation of China are in the final stages, according to sources with knowledge of the situation.
    Selling the four gas networks that the National Grid owns is understood to be one of two options on the table, with an official announcement expected early in January.In 2004, the National Grid sold four gas distribution networks, retaining four. If the sale went through, the Grid would still own the gas National Transmission System – the high-pressure network that links to the eight regional distributors.
    The second option is for the National Grid to make the State Grid Corporation a major shareholder in it by issuing a fresh wave of stock.Either deal would help to raise billions of pounds of capital, as well as marking the latest example of an Eastern entity investing heavily in British utilities.
    The Chinese state-run grid is said to be keen to invest in UK infrastructure and operations, and the National Grid’s ability to sell its networks is an opening for the giant. The first option would see the Grid sell off each network to the Chinese.
    A price-tag of between £1billion and £2billion per network is understood to be the most likely sum agreed, sources said.
    When the four previous networks were sold in 2004, the total amount raised was £5.8billion.
    The second option, which sources say is the more likely to be chosen, would make SCG a major investor in the National Grid.
    The issue of 10 per cent of National Grid’s total shares, valued at around £2.2billion, would be given to the Chinese company in a private deal, making it the largest shareholder.
    In 2004, three buyers snapped up the four available National Grid networks.
    A consortium fronted by SSE purchased the South of England and Scotland networks for £3.2billion.
    The Wales and the West network went to the Macquarie European Infrastructure Fund for £1.2billion.
    The North of England network was bought by a consortium led by Li Ka Shing’s Cheung Kong Infrastructure Holdings for £1.4billion.
    No one at the National Grid was available for comment.

  4. Yes. We were at the xmas market. There were so many people, so festive and wonderful to see so many happy friendly people. Most stores were open on the roads. What was fascinating is all the painted doors in zona velha. Do unique.

  5. Tania

    Not only is there circus but also…
    8pm Xmas Day – Ballet Gala: Russian Ballet “Christmas Season”, organized by “Paladar à Música – Madeira Congress Centre

    Booking:[email protected] / or contact: 918 479 077

    See revised 23rd December and previous blog postings

    Merry Xmas to all!

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