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Eccles Cake

Small flat oval cakes made with currants, chopped peel, brown sugar and spices encased in a flaky pastry.The filling is placed in the centre of the circle of pastry, the edges are gathered up and pressed together, and the cake is turned over and flattened. Three slashes are made across the top of each cake (said to represent the Holy Trinity), then the top is glazed with egg white and caster sugar (Elizabethan frosting) before baking. The cakes originated in Eccles in Manchester and they are traditionally served with afternoon tea. Banbury cakes, from Banbury in Oxfordshire, are similar to Eccles cakes but are oval in shape.