Remember when I baked this mango tart for my father’s birthday a few weeks ago? That wasn’t enough to feed my entire family, so I had to think of a second cake to bake. The decision was easily made — I had never made a Victoria sponge cake, and figured it was high time I did so. Every baker should have a Victoria sponge in repertoire, I think. Now I finally do!
A classic Victoria sponge seems to use buttercream for the filling, but I’m not very fond of buttercream (way too buttery and creamy — the name kind of gives it away), so I decided to just use whipped cream instead. It worked perfectly! It does mean you shouldn’t make this cake too far in advance. I also added an extra little touch to the usual cream-jam combination, namely some fresh strawberries. The cake does fine without them too, but strawberries make everything better, so why not add them?
I used this recipe from BBC Good Food as the base for my recipe, but made some changes to make it my own (especially to the filling).
- 200 g white caster sugar
- 200 g softened butter
- 4 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla flavouring
- 200 g self-raising flour
- 1 teaspoon of baking powder
- 2 tablespoons of milk
- 200 g strawberry jam
- 250 g fresh strawberries
- 250 g whipped cream (not the stuff from a can – whip it yourself!)
- Icing sugar (for decoration)
- parchment paper
- 1 or 2 springform tins (20-22 cm)
- and an oven, of course! This cake needs to be baked at 170 °C (don’t forget to preheat your oven!)
So, let’s get baking!
1. Mix together sugar, butter and vanilla Take a large bowl and mix together the caster sugar, softened butter and vanilla flavouring until you’ve got a nice and creamy mixture.
2. Add milk and eggs Add the milk, and also beat the eggs through, one by one. Mix everything together until you’ve got a nice and even mixture.
3. Add flour and baking powder Sieve the self-raising flour and baking powder above the bowl and fold them through the mixture until it’s all evenly mixed.
4. Bake the cakes If your oven is big enough and you have two tins of the same size: divide the cake mixture over two cake tins (which you’ve lined with parchment paper and greased) and bake them together in the oven for about 20 minutes (they’re done when they spring back after you’ve gently pushed in the middle). I didn’t have two tins or a large enough oven, so I had to bake the cakes separately (and in the same tin). This works fine as well, you’ll just have to be a little more patient. If you do this, let the first cake cool for a while before taking it out of the tin. Then, clean the tin and line and grease it again before baking the second cake.
6. Add jam, strawberries and whipped cream Once your cakes have cooled down completely, it’s time to add the rest of the ingredients. Spread the strawberry jam on top of the sponge you’ve decided to be the bottom one (the least pretty one, I’d say). Then, add slices of strawberries on top of the jam. They’ll probably want to slide off the cake, but that’s going to happen no matter what you do. Once you’ve covered the cake in strawberries, add the whipped cream on top of that and gently spread it over the strawberries. Then take the other sponge and gently put it on top of the whipped cream.
Add the finishing touch by dusting the cake with icing sugar!
And there you have it! A delicious Victoria sponge cake!