Whether you're a beginner or an expert, this step-by-step sponge works every time.


  • Butter for greasing

  • 225g / 8oz butter, softened

  • 225g / 8oz caster sugar

  • 4 medium eggs

  • 225g / 8oz self raising flour, sifted

  • Splash of milk

  • 3 drops vanilla extract (essence is fine, but not as nice)

  • You will need

  • 2 x 20cm cake tins

  • Greaseproof paper or baking parchment


  • 1.

    Preheat the oven to 180ºC / 350ºF / Gas Mark 4.

  • 2.

    Grease two 20cm sandwich cake tins and line the base of each with greaseproof paper.

  • 3.

    Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl for 5 minutes until it is white in colour and light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time adding a tablespoon of flour with each egg.  Once beaten together add the vanilla extract.

  • 4.

    Fold in the flour, adding a splash of milk if necessary to bring the mixture to a dropping consistency.  At this stage you can add some baking powder if you want for extra rise.

  • 5.

    Divide the mixture between both tins then place both tins on the same shelf in the oven baking for 20 minutes until the cakes are well risen, golden brown, and spring back when pressed lightly with a finger tip.

  • 6.

    Remove the cakes from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.

  • 7.

    To remove from the tins slide a table knife between the cake and the tin then pressing against the tin rotate the tin 360º. Turn the cakes on to the wire rack then turn them round to make sure they are sitting top side up. Carefully remove the lining paper and allow to cool completely.

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