I was browsing some British cooking/recipe sites and came across several recipes for Victoria Sponge Cake that looked really good and were lighter than my go-to pound cakes (here, here, here). I wanted something with elderflower and, since lemon goes so well with it, I used a recipe with tonic instead of cordial.
I used a bundt pan but a 9×5 loaf pan or another cool shaped cake pan would make a nice presentation.
So good with a nice cup of tea! Floral and lemony and delicate in texture. Please note that after a day or two, the elderflower scent disappears but the lemon is still deliciously strong.
Elderflower Lemon Sponge Cake
For the cake:
1 stick (8 ounces) unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing the pan
1 cup sugar
Zest of 2 lemons (about 2 tablespoons)
4 large eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
For the syrup:
¼ cup elderflower tonic (I’m using Jack Rudy Cocktail Company Elderflower tonic)
Juice of 1 lemon (about ¼ cup)
Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 325°F. Lightly butter and flour a bundt pan or 9×5-inch loaf pan. Set aside.
Sift together the flour baking powder and salt and set aside.
Using a mixer, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until very pale and fluffy. Mix in the lemon zest.
In a small bowl, whisk the eggs together. Gradually add the eggs to the butter and sugar mixture (about 1 tablespoon at a time), beating well after each addition. Take up to 5 minutes to slowly and completely incorporate the eggs.
Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture into the rest of the batter. Mix just until all the flour is incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake in the oven until a tester comes out clean, about 60 to 70 minutes.
Remove from the oven and cool, in the pan, on a cooling rack for 10 minutes.
While the cake cools slightly, combine elderflower tonic and lemon juice.
After 10 minutes of cooling, prick the still-warm cake all over with a skewer. Drizzle 3/4’s of the elderflower and lemon syrup over the cake so that it seeps into the holes.
Cool cake completely, then remove from the pan. Pour remaining syrup over the top.
Wrap leftover cake in plastic wrap and store at room temperature.