There is something really surreal about being in London in the morning and the Hannafords grocery store in NH at night on the same day. It messes with your head. But we had an amazing trip. The weather was just gorgeous, we even got a bit of a tan! I didn’t blog as much I as planned because I forgot the cord for my camera. Like most people I always forget something. At least it wasn’t something major like a passport.
A few years ago I had tried to make a Victorian Sponge and it failed. The middle wouldn’t cook and it was heavy, basically the opposite of what it should be. I wasn’t sure if my technique was off or the flour was just different enough. So it was on my list to make it while visiting my in-laws. My MIL makes a fabulous Victorian Sponge. My son is a fan so I wanted to get this figured out.
My MIL is a great teacher as it came out perfect! Enough that I will be trying this here at home with our flour.
The cookery book she had is called The Dairy Book of Home Cookery. No idea who wrote it as it didn’t indicate. Which is weird.
If at all possible use a hand mixer rather than the big mixers as you need to be delicate with the batter. Preheat the oven to 350F/180C. Prepare two 7in/18cm tins by greasing with butter. Cut out circles of parchment paper to line the bottom of the tins.
In a mixing bowl add 4oz of caster sugar and 4 oz of softened butter. Cream the two ingredients together with the hand mixer.
Now this is where I went a bit wrong the first time I made this. I was about to move on to the next step when my MIL said I wasn’t close! Keep mixing. And be patient. It needs to be pale in colour and fluffy.
Weigh out 4 oz of self raising flour. Take a tablespoon of flour to the mixture and add an egg.
Mix well and repeat this step with another egg.
Sift the remaining flour in and gently fold it into the egg and butter mixture.
You want to keep it airy as you do this step, don’t crush the fluffiness! Divide the batter between the two tins.
Bake for 25-30 minutes until it is golden brown and is springy to the touch.
Cool for a few minutes then turn out on cooling racks. Once it is cool spread jam of your choice onto one of the cakes and top with the other cake. We used my Mil’s amazing rhubarb and ginger jam. I’ll have to try to recreate it. Delicious! Sift powdered sugar on top.
Serve when ready. Add a cup of tea and enjoy!
So glad my MIL helped me with this because this is definitely a treat we love. 🙂
Tips: If the batter comes out a little dry because of the flour add a little milk. For different flavours add a teaspoon of vanilla or almond extract.