Victoria Sponge

We like to spoil ourselves occasionally with a delicious Victoria Sponge for Sunday tea. I’ve made many in the past and equally had many failures but this is the only recipe I use now and it’s never failed me. I make my sponges slightly differently to the normal method in that I separate the eggs, whisking the egg whites into stiff but not dry peaks in a clean bowl, and lightly whisk the egg yolks before adding to the creamed butter and sugar. I find this makes for a lighter sponge. However, you may prefer simply to add each egg whole.

The filling is whatever you fancy, be it cream and jam, cream and fresh fruit, buttercream. We prefer cream and jam, be it raspberry or strawberry.  Cream on bottom, jam on top, or vice versa? It makes no difference, it all tastes just as good! You can substitute some of the flour with cocoa powder, add cocoa powder to the cream, or Bailey’s liquor. The choices are endless.

Ingredients

For the sponge:
200g butter (salted or unsalted – it’s up to you), softened, plus extra for greasing
200g self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
200g caster sugar
4 medium eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

For the filling:
about 6 tbsp raspberry jam
250ml double cream, whipped
icing sugar, for dusting

Method

  1. Heat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5.
  2. Grease and lightly flour two 20cm sandwich tins.
  3. Separate the eggs, whites into a large clean bowl, yolks into another.
  4. Whisk the egg whites into fairly stiff peaks – either by hand or electric whisk, or in a food mixer.
  5. Whisk the yolks together with the vanilla extract.
  6. Place the softened butter and caster sugar into a large bowl and beat to a creamy consistency. Again, this can be done with an electric whisk or in a food mixer.
  7. Slowly beat in the egg yolks one by one, then gently fold in the whisked egg whites.
  8. Fold in the flour, trying to keep as much air as possible, until well mixed.
  9. Divide the batter between the cake tins and place in the oven.
  10. Bake for approx 20 mins until risen and golden brown. They should spring back when gently pushed in the middle.
  11. When ready, remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tins for 5 mins before turning out onto a wire rack.
  12. When completely cold, spread cream on one layer, jam on the other and sandwich together.
  13. Dust with icing sugar and serve.

Should you by any miracle have any cake left over, it can be frozen. I have in fact frozen a whole cake, or ready cut into portions, in advance. Because I use vacuum-seal bags in my freezer, the cake/portions are frozen loose before packaging, but it could equally be put into a freezer box/container first before freezing.

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