The Ultimate Victoria Sponge


This really it the ultimate Victoria sponge! Light and fluffy vanilla sponge sandwiched together with thick buttercream, warmed strawberry jam and piles of fresh berries. It's one of the most simple recipes with simple ingredients and techniques but it really does look beautiful decorated - a true classic!


Total time to make : 60 minutes (inc. sponge cooling time)

Time to prepare : 10 minutes

Time to bake : 20 minutes

Servings : 12 slices


Ingredients


Sponge

220g unsalted butter, room temperature (plus extra to grease)

220g caster sugar

4 eggs, room temperature

220g self-raising flour

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla extract or paste

2 tbsp milk


6 heaped tbsp strawberry or raspberry jam


Buttercream

150g unsalted butter

300g icing sugar, sieved

1 tbsp milk

1 tsp vanilla

Pinch of salt


To decorate (optional)

Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, mint sprigs



Method

  1. Preheat a fan oven to 170C and grease and line 2 x 8" (20cm) cake tins with baking paper

  2. In a bowl, sieve in the flour, baking powder and salt and stir to mix, leave to one side

  3. In a seperate large bowl (or standing mixer with paddle attachment), beat the softened butter until it's smooth, then add in the sugar and cream together until smooth, light and fluffy. Crack in the eggs one at a time and mix together

  4. Add the bowl of mixed dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and salt) into the wet mix, add in the 2 tbsp of milk and vanilla and gently fold until just combined

  5. Pour the cake batter between the two prepared tins and use the back of a metal spoon to smooth the surfaces out. Place in the oven on the centre rack and bake for about 20 minutes until golden and springy to touch. The sponges are ready when they have a soft spring back when gently pushed with fingertips and a metal knife or skewer comes out with no raw batter - it's OK if there's crumbs, but no wet, streaky batter

  6. Leave the sponges to cool in their tins until cool enough to touch, then remove and cool on a cooling rack. This cake is best assembled once it's completely cooled to room temperature (otherwise the buttercream melts off!)

  7. For the buttercream, in a large clean bowl, use an electric whisk (or standing mixer with paddle attachment) to whip the butter until it's pale and fluffy. Add in the sieved icing sugar and continue to beat together on a low speed until smooth. Add in the vanilla and milk 1 tbsp at a time (if needed to loosen the mixture) and mix

  8. Once the sponges have completely cooled, warm the jam in a small saucepan over a low heat. Remove from the heat once it's warmed through (this just helps us pour it evenly over, it doesn't need to be hot)

  9. For the base - spoon 1/3 of the buttercream frosting on top of one sponge, pile on a single layer of fresh berries and press them down to 'glue' into the buttercream. Pour the warmed jam over the berries. Spoon the remaining buttercream frosting on top of the second sponge and sandwich it on top. Decorate with fresh berries, starting with the big ones first and filling in the gaps with smaller ones, mint leaves or any other garnishes

  10. Slice and enjoy!





Nutritional Information

(per serving)


505 calories

5g protein, 40g carbs, 36g fat



Good to know:

  • If your mixture does begin to curdle or look a bit separated (sometimes at stage 4 when we add the eggs in) don't worry. Continue to add the eggs in one by one. It will all come together when we add in the flour and dry ingredients

  • You don't have to sieve in the icing sugar if it's 'soft' icing sugar, but if there are hard clumps, then it's best to sieve in before you whisk together. It doesn't take long and makes a big difference

  • This recipe is for 8" circular cake tins, different sizes and shapes may require different baking times and temperatures. Always line your baking tins to stop the sponge sticking

  • You could also make cupcakes of this instead, should make about 12 (depending on the cupcake case sizes), bake at 170C for 15 minutes or until golden and springy to touch (time may vary depending on size)

Storing

  • The assembled cake can be stored at room temperature (if you don't live in a warm country/it's not Summer) or in the fridge for up to 3 days. Remove from the fridge 30 minutes before eating to allow it to come to room temperature

  • The sponge can be prepared a day or so in advance. Store in an airtight container until ready to ice. It can be frozen for up to 3 months, wrap tightly in cling film and store in an airtight container or wrapped again in aluminium foil before freezing. Defrost fully before icing

  • The frosting can be prepared in advance, keep refrigerated for up to 3 days and take out the fridge about 30 minutes before you need it for icing. There's enough buttercream to sandwich and even do the sides if you do a thinner layer, or pipe the buttercream on to make it look extra special

  • Vegetarian

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