Victoria Sponge with Strawberry Rhubarb Compote
Victoria Sponge is a delicious layer cake with jam and whipped cream or clotted cream sandwiched between. It was developed in England and named after Queen Victoria – it is supposed to have been her favorite dessert. In some old cookbooks it is called a Victoria Sandwich. The invention of baking powder in 1843 led to cakes with a light crumb and spongy texture, and helped make sponge cakes popular. In the UK, most Victoria Sponge recipes use self-raising flour. Here in the US, you simply add 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder per cup of flour, and we’ve included this in our recipe. This cake is also baked at a slightly lower temp for a longer than usual time – this is to keep the sponge moist and airy. You can use jam or preserves for the filling, but we’re also including our recipe for strawberry rhubarb compote. They’re in season, it’s easy to ,make, and it tastes incredible in this cake!
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter or dairy free butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup all-purpose flour or gluten free all purpose flour – we used Bob’s RedMill 1-1
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt (omit if using salted butter or dairy free butter)
~ 2/3 cup of jam, preserves, or strawberry rhubarb compote (recipe below)
1 ½ cups of whipped cream or dairy free whipped cream
Powdered sugar – optional for sprinkling on top of cake
Strawberries and edible flowers for garnish.
Preheat oven to 325°F, grease two 8″ cake tins.
In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time continuing to mix well. Gradually add flour, baking soda and salt.
Divide the mixture between the two cake pans and bake for 20-30 minutes until golden.
Allow to cool completely, then assemble. First, spread a layer of compote or jam on the bottom layer. Top it with the whipped cream. Place top layer on, then sift powdered sugar over it. Garnish with some whole strawberries, violets, and violas. You can also sugar the flowers and the strawberries if you want a bit more sparkle. All you need is an egg white and some sugar!
Strawberry Rhubarb Compote
3 cups diced rhubarb
3 cups hulled and coarsely chopped strawberries
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
2 tablespoons water
Combine all ingredients in a medium sauce pan and place on stove over medium/high heat, stirring to blend. Bring the mixture to a boil, then turn heat to low. Simmer the compote for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely. The compote will last about two weeks in the refrigerator.