Wednesday, December 31, 2014

English Trifle



One of our holiday traditions is to make and enjoy an English Trifle. My hubby spent two years serving an LDS mission in the midlands of England and North Wales, and trifle became one of his favorite things. This is an almost authentic version, using ingredients readily found here, but if you have access to an English pantry, I include those ingredients below. One year we had a friend visit from England, and she taught us how to make trifle. Since then I have figured out how to replicate it as closely as possible with ingredients from my local Smith's.

First off, here is what you need to make a  berry trifle:

a white cake mix (or ready-made sponge cake from a British pantry)
2 small boxes of Jell-o gelatin, raspberry flavor (or English "Jelly")
one bag of frozen berries (raspberries, blackberries & blueberries)
1 large box Cook & Serve Jell-o pudding, vanilla flavor (Bird's Custard powder is one English variety)
1 pint of whipping cream
powdered sugar & vanilla

24 hours before you want to serve the trifle, mix the white cake mix according to the package directions and bake in a Bundt pan. Transfer the cake to a plate, then leave it uncovered and let it sit out overnight. The next morning, slice about 1/2 the cake into 1-inch slices and stand them upright in the bottom of a trifle bowl. I usually end up with about 10 slices of cake in my bowl. Leave a little space in between slices. Fill the spaces with the frozen berries, like so:



I like to try to make it look pretty.  :)

Once that step is done, mix the raspberry gelatin with 2 cups of boiling water and stir until dissolved. Then stir in 2 cups of cold water. Pour the gelatin slowly over the cake and berries so it can soak in.



Now cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set it in the fridge until the gelatin is set. This will take a few hours. Meanwhile, prepare the cook & serve pudding according to the directions on the package and then cover the surface of the pudding with plastic and let it chill in the fridge until the trifle is ready. If you can get English custard powder, make that, but if you can't, cook & serve pudding comes closer than the instant version. It's worth doing.

The set jello layer with the custard layer added.
Finally, whip the pint of cream with a little powdered sugar and vanilla if desired. It doesn't need to be overly sweet with all the other sweetness going on in the other layers. Pour the pudding/custard on top of the set cake/berries/gelatin layer, then top that with the whipped cream. Serve immediately or refrigerate up to two hours. Trifle is best the same day it's assembled, but leftovers can be enjoyed the next day--if there are any. 







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