Spring! Bring it on with this luscious Victorian sponge cake with strawberries en raspberries! A sponge cake is a cake made of biscuit dough (sugar, eggs and flour). First you whip the sugar and eggs until they have multiplied by ten. Then you fold in the four. This way you will become a light but high risen cake. The British call this a Victorian sponge because queen Victoria had a piece of this cake every day with her afternoon tea. Totally called for when you're the queen of the United Kingdom. After having a piece yourself you can only agree with her 100%!
This is a first-rate spring recipe and not only because of all the lovely soft fruit. Sponge cake is a yiest-less cake and is therefore a traditional part of Jewish Passover. With Passover the Jews celebrate the exodus of Egypt and their liberation from slavery. They fled during the night and had no time to bake bread using yiest, for it had to rise several hours. That's why they baked flat, unleavened bread. And that's why sponge cake is still baked with matzo-flour during Passover.
Victorian Sponge with Strawberries & Raspberries
150 gr sugar
100 gr flour
pinch of salt
400 ml cream
250 gr white chocolade in small pieces
150 gr strawberries, halved
150 gr raspberies
icing sugar to decorate
1. Bring cream to a boil in a small saucepan. Place chocolate in a bowl and pour over half of the cream and set aside for 1 minute. Stir until chocolate has melted. Add the rest of the cream and stir until smooth. Leave to cool and place in the fridge for at least one hour.
2. Preheat your oven to 200C. Line two baking tins with paper.
3. Mix the eggs and sugar in a large (!) bowl and mix them with an electric mixer for 8 to 10 minutes or until the mixture is white and very fluffy. Fold half of the flour into the mixture and if the flour has completely been incorporated fold in the rest of the flour. Pour the batter into the two tins as evenly as possible. Bake for 15-25 minutes in the oven or until they are light golden brown and bounce back when you press them with your finger. Leave to rest. Don't you worry if the cakes sink in a little bit, totally normal, won't affect the taste.
3. Mix the melted chocolate-cream mix with an electric mixer until you have soft peaks (do not mix too long for you will get chocolate-butter!). Place one of the cakes on a plate using a cake-server or spatula for remember the cake is fragile. Cover the cake with one third of the chocolate mousse. Place the second cake on top of the first and also cover this one with one third of the mousse. Use the rest of the mousse to cover the sides of the cake (you can see I didn't because I was a bit too generous with the mousse in the first place). Place the cake in the fridge for a couple of hours to set. Be sure to cover the cake with plastic wrap if you plan to let the cake set overnight.
4. Before serving: cover the cake with fresh strawberries and raspberries and dust with icing sugar.
Have an extra large slice of cake with your afternoon tea and imagine being queen Victoria on her royal balcony. Enjoy!