It’s no secret, I love Tea and cake. It’s my favourite way to unwind, and also to socialise with friends. A lovely home made cake with a good strong cup of black tea is easily one of my favourite things to do.
When Arthur Price the prestigious cutlery brand approached me to collaborate with them about their fine cutlery, I knew it had to be about my favourite pastime.
Little did I know when strolling around John Lewis 13 years ago looking for things for my wedding list, it would be influencing followers on my Instagram feed, so many years later! There was no such thing as social media in those days!! (feeling like a dinosaur). I never thought that me photographing my teaspoons in 2017 (their cutlery is timeless), that it would lead me to work with them on a photography project.
For the feature, I wanted to post how to make a lovely Victoria sponge cake and a really good cup of tea and use the loveliest cutlery to enjoy it with. I do love an afternoon tea, but I thought this was a more realistic goal to have just tea and cake. So I teamed up with some lovely companies to help make this possible.
The Perfect Victoria Sponge by Cake Angel
Nikki is a Hertfordshire based baker and her family have been baking for a living for two generations. Nikki provided me with the most delicious cake for the feature and she has kindly shared her recipe with me, so you too can make you own.
Nikki’s Victoria Sponge Cake
Pre heat oven to 170c or 150 for fan ovens
You’ll need 2 x 7″ tins greased and lined with baking parchment
For the cake;
250g Caster sugar
250g Butter (room temperature)
4 Large Eggs (room temp)
250g Self Raising Flour
Half Tsp baking powder
1 tbsp Plain full-fat yoghurt (optional)
1 tbsp Vanilla Extract
Seedless Raspberry jam, or any jam of your choice
250g Butter (room temp)
600g Icing sugar
1 tbsp Vanilla Essence
Splash of milk
Cream sugar and butter together until light and fluffy, add two eggs , vanilla extract and half flour, beat till just combined, add the last two eggs and beat till mixed in, then add remaining flour, baking powder and yoghurt.
Split cake batters equally between the two tins and place on the middle shelf of your pre heated oven. Bake for 25-30 minutes. The cakes are done when they are golden and a skewer/knife when inserted comes out clean.
Once removed from the oven leave to stand for 5 minutes and then remove from their tins onto a cooling rack. Once completely cooled place one of the sponges upside down, so that the base is facing up and you have a nice flat surface, on your serving plate or cake board.
Spread a good amount of jam on top and then either spread or at this point you could pipe your buttercream on top of the jam. Place the second sponge with the top facing upwards and sprinkle with icing sugar.
How I make my Tea
The first thing to consider when making a good cup of tea is the cup you are drinking from. I love a pretty teacup, vintage teacups are my favourite, and it feels very British to drink my tea in this way. I have read that porcelain cups are the best way to drink a cup of tea. I purchased my vintage tea set from a lovely company called the Vintage Emporium in Enfield, London. They stock the most beautiful vintage items, and I probably visit them at least once a week. They have anything and everything vintage you could ever dream of.
I like my tea strong, and like tea bags, as opposed to tea leaves. I don’t like faffing with a strainer and like to use a Teapot ( it feels a little fancier). I do know that allowing the tea to sit in the water for at least 5 minutes allows more anti oxidants and flavour, so I definitely do not hurry. I use fresh water, reboiled water can taste metallic. I don’t like too much milk and use semi skimmed milk, this way it’s always really hot and you won’t have the scummy film on top. You can see more instructions on how to make good cuppa here
My Table was set, and the Tea and Cake were ready. My daughter and I sat down and enjoyed a lovely hour together. Nikki’s Cake was delicious and we enjoyed using the lovely pastry forks from the Dubarry range to eat our cake. The teaspoons were from the Kings range at Arthur Price, and although they were new, the designs fitted our mismatched vintage theme and really finished our table setting perfectly.
Blogging has really pushed me out of my comfort zone, it’s encouraged me to go find places and do things, that I never would normally do.
Decorating, preparing and styling a vintage theme tea and cake with my daughter wouldn’t have happened, if I didn’t think creatively about my blog posts. It was such a fun time, and we giggled our way through most of it.
Vintage tea sets are my absolute favourite, and I loved styling this shoot – I’d like to thank the Crews Hill Vintage Emporium who also loaned me the tea set to start with, I couldn’t part with it of course, so bought it anyway. You can find their Instagram account here and facebook page here.
Lastly a huge shout out to Your London Florist, who always provide me with the prettiest of blooms for my work. You can find them here.
This blog post was kindly sponsored by Arthur Price Cutlery, however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Thank you for stopping by,
lots of love