April 23 is St George’s Day, celebrating England’s Patron Saint and renowned dragon-slayer. It is an ideal occasion on which to bake that most quintessentially English cake, the Victoria Sponge, which first became popular during the reign of Queen Victoria and is a favourite of HM The Queen, her great, great, grand-daughter.
220g caster sugar, plus extra for dusting
220g self-raising flour
3 tablespoons milk
250ml double cream
2 tablespoons sifted icing sugar
4 heaped tablespoons raspberry jam
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Grease two 20cm round cake tins with butter, then line the base of each with baking parchment.
Cream together the butter and caster sugar until light and fluffy, then gradually add the eggs and beat in well.
Fold in the flour and the milk to produce a dropping consistency. Divide the mixture between the two tins and bake in the middle shelf of the oven for 20-25 mins until golden brown and well-risen.
Leave to cool slightly in their tins then remove the base liners and transfer the cakes to a wire rack to cool completely.
Whisk the cream in a bowl until soft peaks form when the whisk is lifted. Stir the icing sugar into the cream.
Once the cakes are cool, spread the top of one of the cakes with jam, then spread a layer of sweetened cream on top and cover with the other cake.
Finally, dust the top with caster sugar.