The Perfect Victoria Sponge
- 400g/13oz self-raising flour
- 1¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 200g/7oz caster sugar
- 115ml/3 3/4oz sunflower oil
- 400ml/14fl oz dairy-free milk, such as oat or unsweetened soya
- 1 tbsp golden syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 tbsp strawberry jam
- 150g/5oz strawberries, halved or quartered depending on size, to decorate
For the vegan buttercream
- 200g/7oz dairy-free spread, plus extra for greasing
- 175g/6oz icing sugar, sifted
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- Preheat oven to gas mark 4/180°C/fan 160°C. Grease and flour sides and line base of 2 x 23cm (9-inch) loose-bottomed cake tins.
- Sift flour, bicarbonate of soda and sugar into a large mixing bowl and mix together.
- In a jug, whisk together sunflower oil, milk, syrup and vanilla. Pour wet mixture into dry ingredients, then whisk using a hand-blender for 2m until thick and creamy.
- Spoon mixture into the prepared cake tins and bake for 35–45 minutes until risen and cooked through. Remove from oven. Leave to cool in tin for 15m. Remove and leave to cool completely on a wire rack.
- While cakes cool, make the filling: beat together spread, icing sugar and lemon juice in a mixing bowl. Cover and leave to firm up in the fridge until needed.
- Spread jam evenly over one half of the cake, followed by two-thirds of cream mixture. Top with second cake and spread remaining cream on top. Decorate with fruit.