You either love it or hate it, but Trifle definitely has a place on the Christmas table in my heart. I love the stuff. I’ve tried many variations of this classic English dish over the years, including my Aunts which I adored as a child, a Samoan version including roasted peanuts for added texture, and even a mushy version using tinned fruit and jelly (which was not so much my favourite). Being that I am not a fan of custard, it’s surprising that I enjoy this dessert as much as I do, but seriously, I love it!
This dish made its’ way onto our dessert table on Christmas Day, not once, but twice! At two separate gatherings. The ingredients called for made such a huge first serving, that I made a second batch for our dinner time meal too – and STILL had plenty left over for breakfast, lunch and dinner on Boxing Day (actually, perhaps I only had it for breakfast & dessert that day!?) It’s a perfect make in advance dessert option because it can be made in its entirety the day before your event and topped with cream and berries just before serving.
You could switch out the strawberries for any other berries, or even fresh apricots or peaches which are plentiful at this time of year. Come to think of it, cherries would be a gorgeous substitute too!
The addition of the mascarpone to the custard is a rich and decadent treat and takes this trifle to a much more sophisticated level than any I’ve indulged in before.
I wouldn’t even say you have to wait until next Christmas to whip this up – Summer is still upon us and strawberries are still in abundance.
- 1 kg store bought sponge (or panettone), cut into 2-3cm pieces)
- 300ml cream, whipped
- Strawberries, washed, hulled & halved for decorating
- Icing sugar to dust
- 750 grams strawberries, washed & hulled
- 375ml (1.5 C) dessert wine
- 55 g (1/4C) caster sugar
- 35g (1/4 C) custard powder
- 55g (1/4 C) caster sugar
- 625ml (2.5 C) milk
- 250ml (1 C) cream
- 1 vanilla bean, split lengthways (or 1 T vanilla bean paste)
- 250g mascarpone
- Stir the strawberries, wine and sugar in a saucepan over low heat until sugar has completely dissolved. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes until the strawberries are soft, but still retain their shape. Set aside to cool completely.
- Combine the custard powder and sugar in a medium sized saucepan. Whisk in the milk and cream until smooth. Add the vanilla bean or paste. Whisk the mixture over a medium-low heat until the mixture boils and thickens. Boil, whilst stirring continuously for 1 minute. Transfer mixture to a heatproof bowl. Cover the surface of the custard with gladwrap to prevent a skin forming. Set aside to cool completely. Remove and discard the vanilla bean (if using). Fold the mascarpone into the custard.
- Place half the sponge or panettone into a 3L (12 C) capacity glass serving bowl. Top with half of the strawberry compote and half the custard. Repeat with remaining sponge, strawberry compote and custard until all ingredients have been used up. Finish with custard layer. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight to chill completely.
- Top with whipped cream and sliced strawberries, and dust with icing sugar to serve.