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Thread: Sponge Cake

  1. #1
    Super Member Battle Axe's Avatar
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    Sponge Cake

    My friend has asked for help locating a recipe for sponge cake that someone would have made in England in the 1950's. Her Dad had been there and eaten some that was wonderful. My friend got a recipe off the internet and made a hard, heavy, tasteless cake she ended up throwing out. The recipe called for self-rising flour. Is that something different in England? Who has experience making this? TIA Marcia in Indiana

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    Maybe the flour was not wheat flour ? I recall Scandinavian relatives talking about potato flour in a delicious cake. Sometimes those memories can’t be recreated.

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    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LavenderBlue View Post
    thanks... looks yummy and easy
    Nancy in western NY
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    Super Member Battle Axe's Avatar
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    Thanks, now I'm getting hungry. The oven temp mentioned is ???? quite low. Is it C or F?
    Last edited by Battle Axe; 01-03-2019 at 08:25 AM.

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    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    I think that is Celsius as it would be 350 Fahrenheit.

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    https://www.kingarthurflour.com/reci...ch-cake-recipe

    Haven't made it myself but have always had good luck with their recipes

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    Super Member ekuw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tranum View Post
    Maybe the flour was not wheat flour ? I recall Scandinavian relatives talking about potato flour in a delicious cake. Sometimes those memories can’t be recreated.
    This is so true. I have this dilemma. It's not with food but with a smell. The smell is really fresh, might be some type of laundry soap or fabric softener. When ever I smell it, and I do periodically, it reminds me of my Grandmother. I always ask the person if they are wearing perfume, etc and I always get a different answer. For the life of me I can't put a name to the scent.

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    Junior Member charley26's Avatar
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    This sponge cake probably was a Victoria Sponge cake. It is a 'sandwiched' cake with jam, buttercream, or whipped cream +/- strawberries in the middle. It is truly delicious. The WI would say that jam in the middle is the 'correct' version. Self raising flour is flour with a raising agent added by the manufacturer. Flour for baking, in the UK, is either plain (probably your all-purpose flour), and self raising. There is also bread making, pasta, gram, spelt, buckwheat and other types of flour available here. I am attaching a link for the WI Victoria sponge, but of course, it may have been a different type of cake your friend was thinking about.

    https://www.thewi.org.uk/what-we-do/...toria-sandwich

  10. #10
    Super Member Battle Axe's Avatar
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    That was what he remembered. The jam in the middle with the whipped cream. Thanks so much for this info.

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    Junior Member charley26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Battle Axe View Post
    That was what he remembered. The jam in the middle with the whipped cream. Thanks so much for this info.
    Happy to help.

  12. #12
    mac
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    Wasn't the sponge cake made in England called "fairy cakes?" They may have had a different type of flour or used a cake flour for the recipe.

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    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/25...ctoria-sponge/

    Here is a recipe in terms you can follow rather than weighting everything.
    Last edited by Up North; 01-04-2019 at 12:38 PM.

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    Junior Member charley26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Up North View Post
    https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/25...ctoria-sponge/

    Here is a recipe in terms you can follow rather than weighting everything.
    This is known as the 'all in one' method of making a Victoria sponge cake, it is also pleasing, quicker and easier to make than the WI version, but there is a noticeable difference when looking at the texture of the crumb (and taste to some degree). The thing with the WI version is that you just weigh the eggs, then have the same weight of flour, sugar, butter etc. I do prefer to weigh ingredients for cakes, and I have great difficulty with 'cup' measures for baking anything.

    'Fairy cakes' are usually made by the 'all in one' method, but baked in little cases, about a third the size of 'muffins', and decorated with buttercream and sprinkles, or as wished; they can be the first thing little children learn to bake, because they are so quick and easy. They are easy children party bakes too.

  15. #15
    Super Member Battle Axe's Avatar
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    She made it with the self rising flour that was brand new out of the store. Terribly heavy and tasteless. She wondered if there was a different kind of flour also called self rising in England.

  16. #16
    Junior Member charley26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Battle Axe View Post
    She made it with the self rising flour that was brand new out of the store. Terribly heavy and tasteless. She wondered if there was a different kind of flour also called self rising in England.
    It will be 'self raising' flour, I have not seen 'self rising' on a pack of flour here, and it is always good to use fresh flour, or well within the 'best before' date anyway. Your 'all purpose flour' can be used, but a raising agent will be needed.
    I always sift the flour. It is also important to have everything at room temperature, so I always take the eggs and butter out of the fridge the night before, if I am baking cakes the next day. I like the butter to be quite soft - I can make am impression in it with a finger easily. I prefer to use butter when I am baking.

    If making it the WI way, their instructions are best. It is really important to beat the butter and sugar really well, until the mixture is pale and fluffy; I generally beat the mixture for about 5 minutes; add the eggs one at a time while continuing to beat the mixture, and beat well after each egg until well mixed. A spoonful of flour can be added with each egg if wished - helps to stabilise the mixture. Then fold in the remaining flour with a large metal spoon, until all mixed in. Then put the mix evenly in the tins and bake.

    The 'all in one' mix is easier, but still tastes good. Everything goes in together and whisked/beaten for about 2 minutes, put into tins and baked. An extra tsp of baking powder may be needed for the 'all in one' method, to help the cake rise and make up for the lack of air beaten in at the butter/sugar/egg stage of the WI method.

    Your friend should continue, I am sure she will be successful.

  17. #17
    Super Member GEMRM's Avatar
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    I seem to remember my British grandmother adding baking powder to cake and pastry flour to make it self raising flour, but i don't know the proportions, perhaps Mr Google would be helpful....
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  18. #18
    Super Member Battle Axe's Avatar
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Size:  35.2 KBThanks to all your folks for helping Kathleen. She experimented with some of the recipes from you and the ones she got off the interneet. Here is the experiment. The nice cake is regular flour and the flat heavy one is from self rising flour. She is taking them over to her Dad to taste.

  19. #19
    Junior Member charley26's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Battle Axe View Post
    Name:  image1.jpeg
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Size:  35.2 KBThanks to all your folks for helping Kathleen. She experimented with some of the recipes from you and the ones she got off the interneet. Here is the experiment. The nice cake is regular flour and the flat heavy one is from self rising flour. She is taking them over to her Dad to taste.
    Well done, that looks very tasty. I am sure her Dad will love it.

  20. #20
    Super Member Darcyshannon's Avatar
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    Very dedicated. I have found that eggs always seemed to matter more in sponge cake

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    Sometimes the taste of some thing is what is in the memory mixed in with love. That is hard to recreate. I know my brothers talk of my mother's Italian cooking... that I, instead of my mother, usually made as a child to help out in the kitchen. But whan I make it exactly how I used to make a recipe it is "not the same." I don't take it personally and am quite thankful that I don't have go through all that work to please them.
    Penny

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