This was one of the desserts I was really looking forward to trying. I love cakes, and Marcella's description made me look forward to it even more. She said this cake is a local specialty of Venice. During Venice's trading days with the Near East, they obtained ingredients such as the nuts and dried fruits that are ingredients in this cake.
The cake is a mixture of course cornmeal, olive oil, butter,sugar, pine nuts, raisins, dried figs, egg, fennel seed, and flour. It's a very easy cake to mix up, then the cake bakes for about 45 minutes. It's a pretty dense, rich cake, nicely served with a spoonful of whipped cream. I loved the flavor of the fennel seeds with the dried fruits and nuts. The only thing that I didn't love was the texture. I like a mealy texture of cornbread cakes, but maybe my cornbread was too coarse for this. The brand I used looked pretty coarse, so I even used the medium grind. But it was still very granular in the cake. Oh well, it tasted good, so that's the main concern.