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Saturday, 23 January 2016

Classic Victoria Sponge with a twist

I thought that as this is my first recipe I'm posting on my blog, I would go for a classic recipe that I love and always goes down a treat. In the summer time I always like baking a Victoria sponge as it's a summery type cake. My brothers birthday is in July and so I love to bake him this cake but try to change it up each year to make it slightly different. This year instead of using vanilla buttercream and strawberry jam like usual I filled it with cream, strawberry jam and fresh strawberries which made it more of a dessert cake than afternoon tea.
This is the measurements I used and how I made it:

- 8oz margarine                       - 2 round tins
- 8oz caster sugar                    - Wooden spoon
- 8oz self raising flour              - Large mixing bowl
- 3 eggs                              - Measuring spoons and scales
- a cap of vanilla extract            - Cooling rack
- Double cream
- Strawberries
- Strawberry jam

First start by preheating the oven to 180'C.
Then lightly grease the pan with a bit of margarine, I like to cover my hand in cling film and just scrape a bit of margarine from the pot and rub around the tin. Once greased add a bit of flour, about 1tbsp and move the tin around until the flour has stuck to the sides of the tin. Repeat this for both tins, I always like to put the excess flour from the first tin into the second to reduce waste. 

- To make the actual batter, cream the margarine and sugar together in a large bowl with a wooden spoon until it is fully combined. 
- Add the 3 eggs into the bowl and mix again, then add the vanilla extract and continue to mix until it becomes a loose batter.
- Sift in the flour and fold it in until it become thicker and all one combined mix. The colour of the batter will change time to time depending on what eggs you use, the fresher the better!
- Then distribute the mixture between the two tins and put in the middle of the oven and allow them to bake for about 25 minutes.

I usually use the time in the oven to clean the kitchen so I can start fresh when the cakes come out the oven.

The cakes should be lightly golden and to check the cakes have cooked gently press on the top and they should bounce back, another method is to put a knife inside the middle of the cake and no batter should come off with it. I prefer to use the first way as it leaves no marks on the top of the cake.
- Once the cakes have cooked put them on the wire cooling rack and allow them to cool slightly. Then get a small kitchen knife and run around the edge of the tins, keeping close to the edge to avoid cutting into the cake. Turn the cakes out onto the cooling rack and turn so the top of the cake is facing upwards. Leave to cool completely.

While the cake is cooling, whisk the cream until it is of spreading and piping consistency. Chop the fresh strawberries into quarters and decide what plate you want to serve it on.

Once the cakes have cooled place the flat side down of one half onto the plate and cover with strawberry jam, how much you add depends on your preference, my family always likes quite a lot. Then place the strawberries on top of the strawberry jam. On the other half of the cake cover the bottom (flat) side with cream and place on top of the strawberry jam layer, make sure you don't put all the strawberries and cream inside the cake as they are also used for decoration. 

To decorate the cake I piped cream around the edge and placed the remaining quartered strawberries on top. In the centre of the cake I piped some more cream and placed whole strawberries and finally sprinkled with icing sugar. This is just one of the many ways to decorate this cake, so its up to you how you would like to do it.

And thats it! I find this recipe for cakes one of the simplest methods, it doesn't involve lots of ingredients or mixers and it gets fantastic results every time! 

I hope this recipe is as loved with you as it is with me,

Happy baking!

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