After eating a little too much during my vacation, I thought it might be useful to share with you a lighter dessert recipe that is still full of flavour. *This is an updated version of a recipe I first did for my newspaper column back in 2008. I’d also like to say a special thank you to the people at Steelite International who kindly sent me a selection of china, including this amazing one in the photo. This plate is from the Art Glaze range and the colour of this 30 cm plate is called smoke. The highly reflective glaze that gives the impression it is more than one colour.
Victoria Sponge (serves 6-8)
200g (8oz) caster sugar
200g (8oz) softened butter
200g (8oz) self-raising flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
4 large eggs
- Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan assisted oven/Gas 4.
- Butter and then dust with flour two nonstick 20cm (8 inches) sandwich tins.
- Add the baking powder to the flour.
- Cream the butter and castor sugar until it’s soft and fluffy and very light in colour.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs.
- Now gradually beat a little of the egg mix followed by a little of the flour into the butter mixture, whisking the mix before adding more. Repeat this process until all of the egg and all of the flour have been incorporated.
- Divide the mix equally into the two sandwich cake tins.
- Bake for 25 minutes on the middle shelf.
- Turn the sponge out onto a wire rack to cool for 1 hour.
Red Fruit Compote
3 Tbsp (heaped) sour cherry jam
225g (9oz) Plums (half ripe)
225g (9oz) strawberries (hulled and halved)
250g (10oz) cherries
1 teaspoon icing sugar
1 Tbsp custard powder/cornstarch
75ml cold water
- Cut each plum into 6 wedges removing the stone as you go, then place the plum wedges in a non-stick saucepan together with the sour cherry jam and reserve.
- Cut the cherries in half and remove the stones and reserve.
- Now cook plums with jam on a low heat until the plums are half cooked (3-4 minutes).
- Add the cherries to the plums and cook for a further minute.
- Mix the custard powder with the cold water to make a smooth paste and stir into the plums allow to cook for 1 minute to thicken the sauce.
- Pour the fruit into a bowl and allow to cool.
- When the red-fruit mix is cool stir in the strawberries.
200ml Double cream
zest of 1 lemon finely diced and chopped
juice of half a small lemon
200g (8oz) set Honey yoghurt
1 teaspoon caster sugar
- Divide the double cream into two small bowls
- Whisk one half of the cream together with zest & sugar until thick and chill.
- Squeeze lemon into the only half of cream and whisk until thick, then chill
- Combine both creams and the yoghurt, folding the mixes gently.
- Spread the lemon yoghurt filling onto one half of the Victoria sponge and top with the other half, then refrigerate until you are ready to serve.
Dust the cake with icing sugar and serve a wedge of cake with a good spoonful of the red fruit.
Make sure the yoghurt you use is as thick as you can find so the filling does not run out of the cake. Don’t overfill the cake with the cream lemon yoghurt filling, or it might end up running out when you try cutting it. Better to serve any leftover on the side, so your plates look neat. Make sure you use a sharp knife to get clean edges to your cake portions. When you add the strawberries to the fruit, the water content of strawberries will slightly thin down the sauce which is why I thicken the sauce beforehand.
Lemon Yogurt Cake with Red Fruit (serves 6) copyright Kevin Ashton 2019
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