I would hazard a guess that Victoria sponge cakes are one of the first a lot of people will bake because they're one of the least complicated cakes to bake, use few ingredients, and are a standard recipe which follows a ratio of 1:1:1:1. That is to say the fat and dry ingredients should each weigh the same as the eggs. For me this is the only recipe I remember in imperial weights (4oz of butter, 4oz of flour, 4 oz of sugar, and 2 eggs) thanks to my mum's McDougalls' baking book.
With all this said, I've tweaked the recipe a bit so I'm no longer following the ratio. I think this gives a slightly better sponge. I use less fat and flour compared to the eggs and slightly more sugar. I've also adapted the recipe so that it scales up and down nicely (although I should note I've not tested these bake times, so do keep an eye on them):
16cm cake - 90g butter, 105g sugar, 2 eggs, 90g flour, 1 tbsp milk - bake for approx. 25 mins
18cm cake - 180 butter, 210 sugar, 4 eggs, 180g flour, 2 tbsp milk - bake for approx. 30 mins
As for the filling I've made a lazy jam. It's lazy in the sense that I don't check to see if it's at a setting consistency. I like it to be more like a compote for texture. Take said, the jam should set if left to cool and popped into the fridge.
I've also left the amount of cream you use open to preference. 200ml of cream is enough to cover the sponge however if you like a thick layer then by all means use 300ml.
Hands-on Time 40 minutes (plus cooling)
Baking Time 35 minutes
270g plus extra for greasing Unsalted butter (softened)
270g plus extra for dusting Self-raising flour
360g Caster sugar
6 Eggs, large
2 tbsp Full-fat milk
1 tbsp Lemon juice
200-300ml Double cream
Icing sugar for dusting
2x20cm Cake tins
Preheat the oven to 170°C/150°C (Fan)/325°F/Gas mark 3.
Cut the baking parchment to fit the bottoms of each cake tin.
Grease the bottoms and sides of the tins with butter, line with the parchment, and dusts the sides with some flour, tapping away any excess.
In a mixing bowl cream together 270 grams of butter and 310 grams of sugar.
Gently beat in eggs, one at a time. Don’t worry if it starts to look a little curdled.
Fold 270 grams of flour along with a pinch of salt into the mixture. It’s best not to add it all in one go. You will find the mixture will come together and turn thick and smooth.
Finally add the milk and give a final fold.
Divide the mixture between the tins and level them out so they’re as flat as possible.
Pop the tins into the oven on a middle shelf for 35 minutes.
When the cakes have baked take them out of the oven and leave them to sit in their tins for 15 minutes.
Carefully turn the cakes out onto a wire rack and remove the baking parchment from their bottoms. Leave them to cool for 30 minutes before turning them right way up and let them rest until completely cooled.
If you are making the lazy jam, remove the tops from the strawberries, half, and pop them into the saucepan.
Add 50 grams of sugar along with the lemon juice.
Pop the pan over a high heat until it starts to bubble before turning it down to as low as it goes.
Leave the strawberries to bubble away for 15 minutes, very gentle stirring every 5 minutes.
Take the pan off the heat and spoon the jam into a bowl to cool.
When you’re ready to assemble the cake, whisk the cream until stiff in a clean mixing bowl.
Place one sponge, right way up onto a serving plate. Top with the cream.
Smooth the cream out using a spatula. If the jam hasn’t yet set I find it’s best to make the outside edges of the cream raised so it stops any leakage.
Spoon the jam onto of the cream.
Place the other sponge on top of the cream, again right way up. Gently press down on the cake so it sandwiches itself to the cream and jam.
Using a sieve dust the top of the cake with icing sugar.