So far in Baking through Fika I’ve not done anything beyond the stated recipe. But every other recipe has been pretty straightforward without much room for creative license. This is a simple sponge cake with lots of ways to play! So I decided to do a Victoria sandwich type cake, but in mini form. I blame by recent binge of The Great British Baking Show during which I cried more than once. It’s so wonderful. Go watch it now.
These sweet little cakes were a great way to come back from the disappointment I experienced with my first attempt with this sponge cake. See instagram post for those beauts…
There is little doubt in my mind that my sponge cake was imperfect. I don’t know what perfect sponge cake should be like, but having made it only twice I am certain that I do not have the skills to make it perfectly. Should it have all those bubbles? Should it have risen more? Should I have baked it longer? Or less?! How’s the flavor? I would love (and at the same time hate) to have Mary and Paul in my kitchen telling me what I’ve done wrong and how to fix it. But this cake certainly tasted delicious, and for me that’s what matters most.
With sweet quick breads like banana and zucchini I like to grease and sugar my pans instead of greasing and flouring them. I like the bit of sweet crunch from the sugar. I decided I’d try that with my jelly roll pan for the sponge cake and it worked very well. The cake rounds were easy to cut and remove from the pan with only a few bits that stuck. But would Paul and Mary approve?!?
This one pan of sponge gave me 35 1 1/2 inch diameter rounds. If you don’t have a set of biscuit cutters, go get some. They have many uses beyond biscuits!
So what is a Victoria Sandwich? It is simply two layers of sponge cake with raspberry jam in the middle dusted with powdered sugar. It became popular in England during the reign of Queen Victoria, and I’ve read that it was her favorite tea time treat. But I’ve also read that that is not in fact true. So who knows. Not sure when cream cake in to the mix, but I am happy it did.
Since my sponge cake wasn’t very tall I made three layers instead of the two that I’ve seen in a Victoria sandwich. I like the way they look with the three layers, but if you want to stretch the number of these you can make from one batch of cake, then two layers would be perfectly fine.
I used raspberry jam, but any kind would work. I also played it safe with the amount of jam, just a thin layer. It could’ve used a bit more, but I would rather them have too little jam than to have it oozing down the sides.
After the layer of jam another cake layer is added and sweetened whipped cream is piped on. I add a little powdered sugar, a little almond and a little vanilla extract to mine just because that’s how my mom does it. But go unsweetened, or without either of the extracts of you’d like.
Atop the cream goes one last sponge layer.
Pardon all the pics! I kind of loved taking pictures of these photogenic little bits of sweetness.
Now dust generously with powdered sugar and serve to your lucky guests!
If you plan to refrigerate these don’t do the powdered sugar. Save that for right before serving. It will soak into the cake and make it kind of gooey. Still delicious, just not as lovely.
I’m kind of hoping my daughter will want a tea party for her 4th birthday because I can see these being a terrific addition to the spread.
Mini Victoria Sandwiches
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 1/4 cup flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 1 3/4 ounces melted butter
- 1/2 cup milk (2 % is fine)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- Grease and sugar a jelly roll pan (rimmed baking sheet) and preheat oven to 350°F.
- Beat eggs and sugar until pale, about 5 minutes.
- In a separate bowl whisk flour, baking powder and salt.
- Combine milk, melted butter and extracts in a small bowl.
- Add flour mixture to the egg and sugar mixture, stirring just to combine. Add the milk mixture and fold together into an even batter.
- Spread into pan and bake for 10-15 minutes. It will be light in color and when pressed lightly in the center should spring back.
- Let cool slightly before cutting in to rounds, then let rounds cool completely before moving on.
- rounds of sponge cake (since I had 35 total rounds I used 33 and ate the others!)
- raspberry jam
- sweetened whipped cream
- powdered sugar
- Arrange 1/3 of the rounds on a cookies sheet.
- Spread each with a thin layer of jam.
- Top with another layer of cake.
- Pipe on a nice bit of sweetened cream.
- Top with another layer of cake.
- Dust with powdered sugar.