Teatime was a Victorian creation. To get back her energy, Victoria was served her tea with a variety of sandwiches and light cakes. Sponge cakes with filling were featured heavily during her little tea parties and, since then, have become incredibly popular as light little snack cakes.
Think of the best sponge cake you’ve ever had. Light, fluffy, and the right amount of sweetness. Now plop some tart lemon curd on top of it. Pretty good so far, yeah? Well, what if we take some vanilla bean buttercream and add that do your sweet pile of goodness? Oh yeah. That’s right baby. Did I mention this is totally in mini sandwich form? I dare you to pop the whole thing in your mouth.
Makes about 12 mini cakes
- 1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons sugar
- 3 eggs (separated)
- 1 1/2 cake flour
- 1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
1) Butter the cupcake pan and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2) Cream the butter and sugar together with a mixer until really light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and mix some more. In a separate bowl, whip up the egg yolks until light yellow. Add to your butter mixture and mix it together with a wooden spoon. Sift in the flour and mix together – the batter will be really stiff, but don’t worry, we’ll fix that later. In another bowl, whisk your egg whites until they’ve reached stiff peaks. Take about a quarter of the egg white and stir it into the batter to lighten it up. Take the rest of the egg whites and carefully fold it into the batter until everything has just begun to come together. Slowly fold in the heavy cream.
3) Spoon two hefty tablespoons of batter to each cupcake tin. Bake for about 10 to 15 minutes, or until your cakes are golden and your cupcake tester comes out clean. Set out to cool before frosting.
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1/2 cup and 2 Tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 Tablespoon lemon zest
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 Tablespoon cornstarch
1) In an saucepan, whisk together the butter, sugar, juice, and zest over low heat and cook for about five minutes. Add the eggs and cornstarch, whisking briskly to combine, and continue to cook while stirring for about 5 to 7 minutes. At this point the mixture will thicken. Remove from heat, pour into a large bowl, and cover tightly with a piece of plastic wrap. Make sure the wrap is touching the top of the curd, or a real nasty skin will form while cooling. Cool in the fridge for at least one hour before using.
Vanilla Bean Buttercream
- 1 cup butter
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 vanilla bean, scraped
- pinch of salt
- confectioners sugar
1) In a mixing bowl, whip up the butter until light and fluffy. Add the extract, the salt, and the bean scrapings and mix some more. Slowly add the confectioner’s sugar until you’ve reached your desired thickness and sweetness. (I believe I used around a cup and a half)
Take two cakes – spread the cooled curd on one side and buttercream on the other. Sandwich the two cakes together and sprinkle with powdered sugar. Enjoy with a spot of tea.