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“Good luck,” quipped Little Guy as he left the room, “you’re going to need it”. Thanks kid!

My first attempt at Mary Berry’s Victoria Sponge Cake Recipe was not really a victory. I didn’t realize it was supposed to be two round cakes, not 12 small ones. When I traced the bottoms of my muffin pan onto parchment paper, the marker quit working. And when I sprayed the cups with cooking oil, it was empty. I realized my cake pan mistake just as I put them in the oven, but there was nothing left to do but bake… I guess that kid was right – when it comes to baking, I need luck! A lot of it!

The Victoria Sponge or Victoria Sandwich is a well-aerated sponge cake sandwiched together with jam (usually raspberry), cream (or custard), and dusted with sugar. It evolved from the traditional pound cake with four equal parts of flour, sugar, butter and eggs.

I found two theories around the origin of this tasty tea-time treat. One source suggests this cake was served as Nursery Tea. In early Victorian days afternoon tea would have included a fruit cake and a seed cake, but both were believed to be a choking hazard to children. A,cake with jam was much more suitable. Another source suggests this cake became popular during the reign of Queen Victoria, and so was named for her. Queen Victoria insisted on cake and edible treats at every afternoon tea. Regardless of the origin, it remains a classic English teatime treat.

Vic Sponge (1) (800x481)

My first attempt at a Victoria Sponge was in February, but late last week, I tried it again. This time it was for a late celebration of my Mom’s birthday. And this time, “lady luck” was on my side. Yum!

I’m not a total dead loss as a woman, I may not be able to knit or make plum jam but I can bake a bloody Victoria sponge… – Chris, Calendar Girls (2003)

Happy Monday – Go put the kettle on!