Well i’ve got all this Strawberry Jam, it would be silly not to make a cake I say. Plus I owe Papa Gascoyne a cake for a belated Father’s Day visit, so all the more reason. You can’t beat a good old fashioned Victoria Sponge on a summer’s afternoon, layered with fresh Strawberries and cream.
You will need x3 7” Sandwich Tins.
Unsalted Butter – 255g
Golden Caster sugar – 255g
Plain flour, sifted – 255g
Baking Powder – 3 Teaspoons
Eggs – 4 large, beaten
Vanilla – 1 Teaspoon of extract or the scraped seeds of 1 pod
Milk – A tablespoon or two to adjust the mix
Strawberry Jam – 8 Tablespoons *See my Strawberry Jam recipe if you want to make your own
Double Cream – 200g
Thick Greek Yoghurt – 150g *see tips regarding this
Icing sugar – 2 Teaspoons
Vanilla – 1/2 pod, seeds scraped out.
Fresh Strawberries – a few handfuls for the filling and garnish
The Cake: Preheat the oven to 170°c. Grease and line the tins with a circle of parchment paper in the base.
Weigh the butter and the sugar into a mixing bowl and beat until very pale and fluffy. Now add the eggs gradually, incorporating well between each addition until fully combined. Add a teaspoon of flour if it starts to curdle a little. Mix in the Vanilla. Sift together the flour and baking powder and then fold carefully into the mixture. If the mixture looks a little stiff, add a tablespoon or two of milk until it reaches dropping consistency. Be aware that if you over mix it you will lose all the air so don’t play around with it too much.
Divide the mixture into the 3 cakes tins, gently level the mixture out with the back of a spoon and place into the oven. Bake for around 20-25 minutes, until golden and springy to touch. I always insert a sharp knife to see if it comes out clean. *see tips for advice on baking. Remove them from the oven and leave to cool in their tins for 10 minutes. Now you can run a blunt knife around the edges of the tins and remove them, leaving them to cool on a wire wrack.
The Filling: Take an electric or hand held whisk and whip the cream, icing sugar and vanilla to peaks. Fold the yoghurt into this gently and taste. If you wish to add more icing sugar, add another teaspoon.
Spread a few tablespoons of jam onto one of the trimmed sponges, trimmed side facing upwards. Now put half the cream mixture onto this and gently spread it around. Take some of the strawberries and slice them into lengths and lay these on top of the cream.
Lay the next trimmed sponge on top of this and repeat with the jam, cream and strawberries. Lastly place the untrimmed sponge on top and dust with icing sugar. Add a few whole strawberries on top for decoration and serve.
– Don’t be tempted to check your cake too early. Only insert a knife if it really looks as though it is cooked or you will end up knocking the air out and having a big dip in your cake.
– The cream – when you whisk cream you must be careful not to over whisk it or you will end up with butter! Trust me I have done this and I have a very vivid memory of my Head chef yelling my name across the kitchen, whilst a watery liquid spewed out of my kitchen aid and a lump of butter had formed in the whisk. Always better to be a little under than over.
-The yoghurt – I use the Total brand as its lovely and thick. This is just to lighten it up a little and it tastes lovely, you can ommit it if you don’t fancy it
– I DON’T HAVE THREE CAKE TINS THE SAME SIZE – You can just bake the mix in two cake tins, preferably a little bigger 8-10″and have two layers instead of three. Or even slice two cakes in half horizontally and have 4 layers… that would be a monster cake!!