Victoria Sponge Cake

So, my new boss is going out on maternity leave.  She’s British, I said I wanted to make something  for her and I asked what she liked.  She said a Victoria Sponge Cake and my response to that was “what’s that”?

Turns out it’s this light cake with preserved and whipped cream and powdered sugar.  It also turns out that there are apparently 100,000 different ways to make it (I counted).  So, I did my research and put this recipe together, which is basically just a mashup of the different recipes I found.  And I’m really happy with the way it turned out!

One thing that was difficult is that whipped cream doesn’t really travel well, so I made the cake at home and brought the cream, powdered sugar and preserves along with my hand mixer with me to work and just whipped the cream there and put everything together in my office kitchen.

Running a hand mixer at work…draws a lot of attention.

Ingredients

Cake

4 eggs

1 cup plus 2 T powdered sugar

1 cup butter, softened to room temperature plus some additional for greasing the pans

1 cup flour

2 t vanilla

1 ½ t baking powder

2 T milk

Fillings

1 cup strawberry jam

1 cup heavy whipping cream

2 T powdered sugar

1 t vanilla

Additional powdered sugar to sprinkle on the top

Directions

This is surprisingly simple for a fancy British cake!

Put the eggs into a mixing bowl and beat just until mixed – not very long.  Next, add in the remaining ingredients – powdered sugar, butter, flour, vanilla, baking powder and milk and blend that with your hand mixer until well-blended.   Honestly, that’s it for the cake!

Take 2 8” or 9” cake tins and grease them well with butter.  Split the cake mixture evenly between the two pans.

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Bake the cakes at 350 for about 20 minutes, until they’re golden brown around the edges and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out cleanly.  Cool these on a wire rack.

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After the cakes have cooled, we’re going to do the fillings and they’re super simple.

Turn one cake upside down and spread the strawberry jam evenly along the bottom.

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Next, put the whipping cream, powdered sugar and vanilla into a small bowl and whip that until stiff peaks form.  Take that whipped cream and spread that on the top of the second cake.

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Take the cake with the jam on it and put that on top of the cake with the whipped cream on it – pretty much like you’re making a whipped cream and jelly sandwich (which, by the way, my mother NEVER made for me and it’s scarred me forever).

Finally, just sift powdered sugar on the top of the cake and you are done!  Serve it and feel very continental!

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There are a few other Brits in our office and they all mentioned how popular this cake is there, but also how versatile it is.  There are a lot of ways to fancy it up so I expect we may be seeing another version of this from me sometime in the foreseeable future.

 

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