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Simone Rocha may be best known for her deeply romantic sartorial creations—be they beaded bow-shaped barrettes or voluminous layers of delicate, pearl-embroidered tulle—but, as it turns out, her subversively saccharine touch extends beyond the sewing table. Recently, the Dublin-born designer has taken to making a Victoria sponge, which she fills with fresh raspberries, from Violet Cakes’s Claire Ptak.
What gives this traditional treat a distinctly Rocha streak, however, is its swoon-worthy shape. “My grandmother used to have a heart cake tin and make flan in it,” recalls Rocha, who was inspired to pick up a similar baking pan, which she now puts to use on special occasions, such as the birthdays of her mother, Odette, and daughter, Valentine—and perhaps even this coming February 14. As for her pro tip? “Make sure your eggs and butter are room temperature!”
Below, Simone Rocha’s Valentine’s Day cake recipe.
9 oz unsalted butter at room temperature
1 ¼ cups sugar
250g (4-5) eggs
1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp whole milk
1 ¾ cups plain or all-purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
5 tbsp jam of your choice
2 baskets of fresh raspberries
8oz whipping cream
Powdered sugar for dusting
Butter and line two 8” cake tins with baking parchment.
Cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
Beat in eggs one at a time, occasionally scraping the bowl.
Whisk flour and baking powder together with salt.
Add flour mixture to butter mixture and continue to mix until incorporated.
Add milk and mix until combined. (Do not over-mix or the cake will become tough.)
Pour into the prepared baking tins.
Bake at 350°F, about 30-35 minutes, until risen. (A skewer should come out clean.)
Spread one cake with jam.
Whip the cream to soft peaks and spoon on top of the jam.
Cover with raspberries.
Top with the second cake layer.
Dust with powdered sugar.
Chill until ready to eat.