Trifle Anyone?

I didn’t achieve a lot today, but I felt good. The daily waterfalls are kicking in and my outlook has cheered up. Today I wish there was some trifle left, because my day would be topped with a cherry.

The sherry soaked sponge soaked, sharp raspberries stabbing the silky smooth custard; lightly whipped cream and jewelike cherries competing with toasted flaked almonds. It’s busy but simple.

Well, that’s how my mum’s trifles turn out. There’s an air of finesse, in a dish that isn’t very sophisticated. Each layer should be distinct but also meld with its mates to make one amazing pudding.

This baby was my first ever, and it got eaten right up, so the hitter it was, however there were a couple of mistakes that I would want to do better next time.

1) A very large slug of sherry was added by Himself because he thought it was funny, so the dessert was overwhelmingly sherry flavoured.

2) I used a flat whisk (with the spiral loop) which whipped the cream too stiffly, without warning, so that wonderful softness was lost.

Mum’s Trifle

As many “Lady’s Finger” trifle sponge biscuits as will fit on the bottom of the chosen dish. Two layers if the dish is deep enough to take it. Soak them in sherry, one slug at a time; soaked is not soggy.

Lay a thick layer of raspberries (fresh or frozen –  no need to defrost) over the sponge and make the custard.

Custard: I keep old vanilla pods in my sugar, so I have vanilla sugar available – just as well since I forgot to buy a pod this time. Using the ratio of 1 egg yolk per 100ml cream and milkwhisk together the yolks and 1 tbsp vanilla caster sugar. Add 1 tsp cornflour (I put slightly more to be certain). Mix in a combination of milk and double cream and set on a low/medium heat. Stir with a wooden spoon until it thickens. Do not boil. Keep stirring after it’s taken off the heat.
Scratch custard is so much nicer than Birds.

Pour the warm custard over the raspberries and allow it to set overnight in a cool place. Put the oven on 180 C and toast a layer of flaked almonds on a heatproof dish. Whip the double cream lightly and cut 8-10 cherries in half.

Dollop the cream over the set custard so that it covers it – a pallette knife is a good tool for this – and set the cherries into the white stuff under a covering of nuts.

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About Sakina Murdock

Greedy, creative, gregarious bird, writing from the bonny northern hills of Cumbria's Eden. There's a lot of soul in this place and the inspiration to create is everywhere, even on the bleakest days. Soulfood. Don't just subsist.
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