Sometimes, less is more and simplicity is the way forward. When it comes to cakes, as much as I adore triple chocolate lusciousness from time to time, or the stunning aesthetic of a rainbow cake, I very often return, with much joy, to the good old sponge! This recipe for Victoria sponge is taken from Lorraine Pascale's 'Baking Made Easy'. To me, it is perfectly simple and the result is a cake that rises beautifully and is springlike and light to eat. Now that strawberries are beginning to come into season, combining them with this cake as its filling, makes for a perfect match. Serve your friends or family a slice of this with a hot cup of tea from your best China teacup and you will surely be a truly impeccable afternoon tea host or hostess! Ingredients: 200 g soft butter 200 g caster sugar 4 eggs 2 tsp vanilla paste 200 g plain flour, sieved 2 tsp baking powder 1-2 tbsp warm water 5 tbsp strawberry or raspberry jam About 10 fresh strawberries 200 ml cream 2 tbsp Creme de Cassis (optional) 1 tbsp icing sugar, plus a little extra Method: Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C/350 F/gas mark 4. Grease and line two 20 cm sandwich tins with baking parchment. Cream the butter and sugar together. Add 2 eggs, 1 tsp of vanilla and half the flour and beat well. Next, add the last 2 eggs, the rest of the flour and the baking powder and beat well. If needs be, add a little water to loosen the consistency. Pour the mixture evenly between the two tins and level the tops with the back of a spoon. Pop into the oven and bake for approx. 30 minutes, until the sponge appears golden in colour, a skewer comes out clean and you can see that the cakes are beginning to come away from the sides of the tins. Leave the sponges to cool and once cooled, remove from the tins, discard the baking parchment and begin the assembly! Clean, hull and chop most of your strawberries into 4 to 5 thinnish slices. Leave 4 whole strawberries aside. Whip the cream to a nice well whipped consistency with the icing sugar sieved through, the last teaspoon of vanilla paste and the Creme de Cassis (if using - you may have guessed, I am a bit of a fan of this lovely liqueur as it only recently featured in my Eton Mess!) Spread the jam onto the bottom of one of the sponges but be careful not to spread it out fully to the edges. Spoon the cream onto the other sponge and spread it out carefully, as above, avoiding going as far as the edges. Arrange the sliced strawberries on top of the cream. Gently place the jam sponge on top of the cream and fruit sponge. Dredge the top with a nice dusting of icing sugar and decorate with the remaining strawberries. Mmm...delish!