Guest chef

Nichola Reith

Nichola is one sibling behind the 'Three Sisters Bake' books. These Scottish sisters also work together running a cafe specialising in homemade goodies.

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‘Naked’ Victoria sponge wedding cake

  • Serves 60-80
3.3/5 rating (171 votes)
‘Naked’ Victoria sponge wedding cake
‘Naked’ Victoria sponge wedding cake

step by step

  • 1In total you will be making 12 layers of sponge cake to create a 4-tier cake, with 3 cake layers in each tier. The 4 sizes of tin that you need are: 12cm; 18cm; 23cm or 25cm; and 30cm or 32cm. Using 4 tins, you will need to bake the cakes in 3 batches.
  • 2Preheat the oven to 160°C, fan 140°C, gas 3. First you need to grease each loose-bottomed tin and line the base and sides with baking paper too. The 4 sizes of tin that you need are: 12cm; 18cm; 23cm or 25cm; and 30cm or 32cm.
  • 3Place a third of all the cake ingredients in a large bowl and, using an electric hand mixer, beat together for 2-3 minutes until the mixture is fluffy and lighter in colour.
  • 4Divide the mixture between the 4 tins, placing progressively smaller amounts of the mixture into the descending sizes of cake tin. There should be a relatively thin layer of cake mix in each. Don't worry too much about the exact quantities going into each – part of the charm of this cake is its rustic look. Smooth out the surface of the cake mix in the tins before baking.
  • 5Two or three of the smaller tin sizes should fit on one rack in the oven. Bake the cakes for 20-25 minutes until springy to touch. Allow the cakes to cool in the tins a little, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat this process twice until you end up with 12 layers of cake.
  • 6To make the buttercream, place the butter and icing sugar in a very large bowl and, using an electric hand mixer, beat everything together – this can take up to 5 minutes. As you start to beat, pour in the milk slowly – you want to add enough to ensure the icing is soft and easy to spread.
  • 7To assemble the cake, take your first 30cm or 32cm sponge cake and put it on a large cake board. On the top-side, spread a thin layer of raspberry jam followed by buttercream. Don't be tempted to add more jam or it will be tricky when you come to layer up the cakes. Sandwich the next 30cm or 32cm layer on top. Repeat this once more. Do not put jam and buttercream on the top layer. Repeat this step with the 23cm or 25cm, 18cm cakes and 12cm cakes. You should end up with 4 stacks of cakes.
  • 8Using a palette knife, carefully lift the 23cm or 25cm tier and stack it on top of the 30cm or 32cm tier. Then lift the 18cm tier and stack it on top of the 23cm or 25cm tier. Finally lift the 12cm tier and stack it on top of the 18cm tier.
  • 9Decorate the cake with fresh flowers and berries, and finish with a dusting of icing sugar.
  • Baking the cakes the day before makes it easier to layer them.
  • Photograph by Helen Cathcart

Get ahead

Make the cakes the day before you want to assemble the cake; they also freeze well.

You will need

  • 900g self-raising flour
  • 900g caster sugar
  • 900g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 15 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 9 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For the buttercream

  • 400g unsalted butter, softened
  • 1kg icing sugar, plus extra for dusting
  • 150-200ml whole milk

+ Nutritional Information