Friday, June 12, 2009

Victoria Sponge Cake

Today I baked a classic English cake: a Victoria Sponge Cake. This cake was named after Queen Victoria. After the death of her husband Prince Albert, Queen Victoria spent time at her house on the Isle of Wight, withdrawing herself from society. In order to inspire the monarch to get back into the swing of civic duties, Queen Victoria was encouraged to host tea parties, where this famous cake came about. I have tried this cake before, and I loved it! Today I made it again with a minor change; instead of layering the whipped cream between the cakes, I poured it on top. Rating: 5 out of 5.

Victoria Sponge Cake recipe: Nigella Lawson - How To Be A Domestic Goddess

Ingredients:
- 1 cup unsalted butter, very soft
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/3 cups self-rising cake flour (I used regular flour with ½ tsp salt, 1 ½ tsp baking powder, and 2 extra tablespoons cornstarch)
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 3 to 4 tablespoons milk

- 2 to 4 tablespoons raspberry jam, or other jam (I needed 4 to 5 tablespoons, and used strawberry jam)
- ½ pint raspberries, or berries of choice
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 to 2 tablespoons sugar

Instructions:
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Cream the butter and sugar, add the vanilla and then the eggs one at a time, adding a spoonful of flour between each. Fold in the rest of the flour and cornstarch and when it's all incorporated, add a little milk as you need.
- Pour and scrape the batter into two 8-inch round cake pans that have been buttered and lined with parchment or wax paper. Bake for about 25 minutes, until the cakes are beginning to come away from the edges, are springy to the touch on top and a cake tester comes away clean. Leave the cakes in their pans on a wire rack for 10 min before turning out and leaving to cool completely.
- When you're ready to eat the cake, put one layer on a plate, right-way up, spread with jam and scatter fruit on top. Whip the cream till it's thickened but still soft and spread over the jammy fruit. Sit the other cake on top and sprinkle with a tablespoon or so of sugar.


The two sponge cakes, right out of the oven.


Spreading yummy strawberry jam on the cake.


And 5 minutes later! The cake looks a bit old lady-like, which I normally hate, but since this cake is named after an old lady, I guess it's ok :P


A cake fit for a queen ... Queen Victoria that is!

7 comments:

Steph said...

That looks delicious and really rich!

Snooky doodle said...

this looks nice, I like old fashioned cakes :)

apparentlyjessy said...

I just love love love the classic cakes, they are just stunning in their simplicty! I can imagine the Queen enjoying this cake with a beautiful cup of tea!

Anonymous said...

I definitely want to read more on that blog soon. BTW, rather nice design you have at that blog, but what do you think about changing it once in a few months?

Anonymous said...

Looks wonderful!
What is regular flour? Is it all purpose flour?

Anonymous said...

I think the idea of placing the cream in the middle is to soak into the cake along with the jam. One of the reasons many recipes suggest refrigerating this cake overnight before eating it. The Brits top the cake with superfine sugar.

Anonymous said...

Simply delicious and so easy to make; however, this cake (and any sweet dessert for that matter) should include some salt to enhance the flavors. I’m not suggesting a salty cake, but if you’ve forgotten to put the salt into a batch of cookies, then you’ll know what I mean – chocolate chip cookies are positively bland if you forget the salt. The recipe calls for unsalted butter, so if you turn the flour into self-rising flour by adding salt, baking power and corn starch to AP flour, then it will get its need salt there. If not, use salted butter or add a teaspoon or so to the recipe.

Contrary to popular belief otherwise, I use salted butter and often omit the salt called for elsewhere in the recipe, like I did with this one. I don’t use unsalted butter otherwise and don’t want odd bits left over, so I always bake with salted butter – it’s not a crime.