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Comfort Cakes: Victoria Sponge

SISTERS Designer Reyhana Ismail shares her classic, delicious sponge cake recipe, which always goes down a treat – especially when using fresh, seasonal fruit.

• 8 oz sugar
• 8 oz butter, softened
• 8 oz self-raising flour
• 4 eggs
• 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• 2 tablespoons boiling water
• 200ml whipping cream
• 1 cup strawberries*
• 3 tablespoons strawberry or raspberry jam

1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6/400°F. Using a food processor, cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla.


2. Gradually beat in the eggs and mix well, ensuring that none of the butter has stuck to the sides of the bowl.


3. Add the flour and baking powder and mix until just combined, then stir in the boiling water.


4. Line two round 24cm cake tins with baking paper, and divide the mixture between them.


5. Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until golden brown. Test the cakes by inserting a skewer or knife – if it comes out clean, the cakes are cooked.


6. Turn the cakes out onto a cooling rack and leave to cool completely. In the meantime, whip the cream and slice the strawberries.


7. Once the cakes have cooled, place one on a plate, ready to assemble. Leave the other one aside. Spread the jam onto the cake, up to the edge. Now, spread on the whipped cream, but keep this approximately an inch away from the edge. Finally, spread the slices of strawberries over the cream.


8. Take the other cake and gently place on top. Dust with icing sugar, serve and enjoy!


*The strawberries can be replaced with peaches, raspberries or any other fresh, seasonal fruit.