Sunday, 9 February 2014

Cake Challenge: Eggless Victoria Sponge

Eggless Victoria Sponge
Last week at work, we had a mini bake-off. When I say mini, I mean it was only between me and my manager, and we only baked one thing each: lemon drizzle cake. It was a fun challenge! Neither of us had every made lemon drizzle cake before, so it was a learning experience - especially since we both struggled to get the thing to cook the full way through! And that was with two different recipes. But, ever the professionals, we both managed to turn out a pretty delicious cake for the competition, and we both got plenty of compliments for our creations. However, my cake was voted the winner, so I was really pleased and surprised (my manager is an excellent baker)!
The winning lemon drizzle cake!

However, one person in the office was not able to enjoy either of the cakes, as I found out that he has an egg allergy. Not satisfied with just having completed and won the bake-off challenge, I decided to set myself another challenge - to bake an eggless sponge cake! I think because I'm vegetarian and sometimes people have to make an extra effort to accommodate my dietary requirements, I like to be able to help out other people when they have dietary requirements of their own. So this was the perfect challenge.

I spent the following few days researching different egg-free recipes and tips. Some people suggested straight substitutions - fruit purees and juices in place of the eggs - some simply altered the quantities of other ingredients in the sponge recipe. I would like to try a few different versions, to find which I like best, but today I started with a simple but effective recipe from Jude's blog, No Eggs. This recipe didn't call for any unusual additions, so looked like it would come out tasting closest to an 'ordinary' Victoria sponge. I very slightly tweaked the recipe (I almost never buy caster sugar, for example, so all of my cakes are baked with granulated sugar, and I omitted the vanilla extract from the icing, as I felt it was tasty enough as it was), so I have included my version below.

Eggless Victoria Sponge

Ingredients:

For the cake:
280g self-raising flour
170g granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
300 ml milk
150 ml vegetable oil
3 tbsp golden syrup
1 tsp vanilla paste

For the filling:
100g butter, slightly softened (but not melting!)
140g icing sugar
a drop of milk
5 tbsp raspberry jam

Method:

Preheat the oven to 180ÂșC, and grease and line two 7-inch cake tins. Sift the flour into a large bowl. Add the sugar and salt, and mix well. Make a well in the middle of the bowl by stirring all ingredients to the side. Mix one tablespoon of the milk together with the bicarbonate of soda and then add this to the well. Next, add the remaining milk, oil, syrup and vanilla pasted. Using an electric mixer, if you have one, beat the ingredients together until they form a batter. (If you don't have an electric mixer, simply use a wooden spoon - this will still work perfectly well, but will just take a bit longer and will require a bit more effort.) Divide your batter between the two prepared tins and put in the oven for 25 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
Looking good...other than the imprinted lines!

Once the cakes are cooked, place the tins on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then take the cakes out of the tins and place directly onto the wire racks to cool completely. TIP: Don't be silly like me, and put your cakes face down to cool on the rack - this will leave you with the pattern of the rack imprinted into the top of your cake! Not a problem if you're going to cover it with icing, but we're not. So put at least one of the cakes face up on the rack.

Whilst the cakes are cooling, make your buttercream. Beat the softened butter with a wooden spoon until it's smooth. Gradually sift the icing sugar in, beating as you go, until fully combined. Add just a drop or two of milk to loosen the mixture and make it more of a whipped cream consistency (but not too much - you don't want the icing dripping off the cake!). Spread the buttercream over one of the cakes, then spread the jam on top of the icing. Place the second cake on top, and sprinkle a little icing sugar over the top to decorate. Finished!

David and I have both tried a bit, and although I think it does taste a bit different to a 'normal' sponge cake, we both like it! I will reserve full judgement until my colleague tastes it tomorrow though - as he must be the true expert on how a good eggless sponge should taste. 

I'd love to hear your ideas for eggless cakes, or how you like this recipe. 


Yum!







9 comments:

  1. I just love a nice eggless cake, we can all eat it. thanks for yours

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  2. Thanks for your comment! I hope you enjoy making and eating this as much as I did :-)

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  3. OMDS!! I have tried a dozen eggless cake recipe's to get a good sponge and none of them have succeeded! They all just go flat! This on the other hand I literally just tried and wow! It was brilliant! Lovely and fluffy on the inside! And really easy!! Thank you so much Katie!

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    1. Thank you for the lovely comment! I'm so glad this worked well for you and you enjoyed it.

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  4. Can u just use vanilla essence ratjer than vanilla paste

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  5. Can u just use vanilla essence ratjer than vanilla paste

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    Replies
    1. Yes, absolutely, vanilla essence or extract would also work fine - you don't need to alter the quantity, either. Hope you enjoy the cake!

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    2. Yes, absolutely, vanilla essence or extract would also work fine - you don't need to alter the quantity, either. Hope you enjoy the cake!

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  6. Hello just wanted to say thank you for your recipe. I have tried many eggless cake recipe and I must say yours is very good and easy. I did this last week and turned out really nice. Really good flavour and nice rise. I did add a little flax seed to mine as I feel this helps the structure of the cake but really good recipe. Thank you

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Let me know what you think...!