I recently made this sponge cake for our post-yoga treat - it was a real winner (see picture below)
220g softened butter
200g caster sugar
4 medium eggs, beaten
220g self-raising flour, served
1 tsp vanilla extract
zest of 1 lemon
¼ tsp baking powder
7 tbsp lemon curd (shop-bought, or homemade)
icing sugar, for dusting
FOR THE BUTTERCREAM
90g butter, softened
180g icing sugar
seeds of ½ vanilla pod or 1 tsp vanilla extract
2 x 20cm round loose-bottomed cake tins
hand-held electric whisk or stand mixer (optional)
1 Preheat the oven to 180C (fan 160C/350F/gas 4) and get the centre shelf at the ready. Line the bases of the cake tins with baking parchment.
2 Cream together the butter and the sugar in a large bowl until the mixture turns from yellow to a paler shade. Add the beaten eggs gradually to the butter mixture with a little of the seived flour and beat together well. Then fold in the remaining flour along with the vanilla, lemon zest and baking powder. Maybe add a drop of milk if the mixture is a bit stiff.
3 Divide the mixture between the lined cake tins and bake on the centre shelf of the oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the cakes have shrunk slightly from the sides of the tin, are springy to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. If you’re using an old-style gas oven, I recommend rotating the cakes two-thirds of the way through, as this gives a more even bake. Once the cakes are baked, remove them from the oven and leave them to cool completely in the tins.
4 While the cakes are cooling, make the buttercream. Cream together the butter, icing sugar and vanilla in a bowl until light and fluffy. Once the cakes are cooled down completely, place one of the layers on a plate and spread over the buttercream. Spoon the lemon curd over the top of the buttercream and gently place the other cake layer on top. Dust with icing sugar to serve.
TIP To make this a traditional Victoria sponge, you can simply omit the lemon zest in the sponge and replace the lemon curd with your favourite strawberry jam.
Recipe from Bake by Lorraine Pascale. Text © Lorraine Pascale 2017.