I’ve made a Victoria sandwich before and while it tasted amazing, it wasn’t much to look at. When we bought the M&S chocolate box cake, we also bought a Victoria sponge version. Jef went away for a few days this week (work-y conference by the seaside) so I wanted to bake something to welcome him back home. I thought of doing the box cake but didn’t think that would really be much of a treat so decided to try my hand at the real version again.
I went for a Mary Berry recipe this time, scaled down for the 6″ pans. It was much more successful – light rather than dense sponge, lovely and even. I did over-bake it – I was working at home that day and took a call just at the moment I should have been taking it out of the oven. As a result, it wasn’t as moist as I would have liked. The recipe below has the correct time: add 7 minutes if you’re on the phone and eyeing your oven in increasing distress!
Victoria Sponge Cake (Original recipe here)
Makes 1 6″ cake
- 2 and a half free-range eggs
- 125g Caster sugar
- 125g Plain flour
- 125g Unsalted butter
- 1 tsp baking powder
- Seedless raspberry jam, whipped doube cream & fresh strawberries to fill
- Icing sugar to dust
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
- Grease and line 2 x 6in sandwich tins: use a piece of baking or silicone paper to rub a little baking spread or butter around the inside of the tins until the sides and base are lightly coated. Line the bottom of the tins with a circle of baking or silicone paper (to do this, draw around the base of the tin onto the paper and cut out).
- Break the eggs into a large mixing bowl, then add the sugar, flour, baking powder and baking spread.
- Mix everything together until well combined. The easiest way to do this is with an electric hand mixer, but you can use a wooden spoon. Put a damp cloth under your bowl when you’re mixing to stop it moving around. Be careful not to over-mix – as soon as everything is blended you should stop. The finished mixture should be of a soft ‘dropping’ consistency – it should fall off a spoon easily.
- Divide the mixture evenly between the tins: this doesn’t need to be exact, but you can weigh the filled tins if you want to check. Use a spatula to remove all of the mixture from the bowl and gently smooth the surface of the cakes.
- Place the tins on the middle shelf of the oven and bake for 25 minutes. Don’t be tempted to open the door while they’re cooking, but after 20 minutes do look through the door to check them.
- The cakes are done when they’re golden-brown and coming away from the edge of the tins. Press them gently to check – they should be springy to the touch. Remove them from the oven and set aside to cool in their tins for five minutes. Then run a palette or rounded butter knife around the inside edge of the tin and carefully turn the cakes out onto a cooling rack.
- To take your cakes out of the tins without leaving a wire rack mark on the top, put the clean tea towel over the tin, put your hand onto the tea towel and turn the tin upside-down. The cake should come out onto your hand and the tea towel – then you can turn it from your hand onto the wire rack.
- Set aside to cool completely.
- To assemble the cake, place one cake upside down onto a plate and spread it with plenty of jam & strawberries. Spread the other cake with cream.
- Top with the second cake, top-side up. Sprinkle over the icing sugar.