CLASSIC ENGLISH TRIFLE PUDDING
A Trifle is a dessert dish invariably made from thick custard, fruit, sponge cake, fruit juice or jelly and whipped cream. These ingredients are usually arranged in layers in a beautiful glass dish with the sponge cake forming the bottom layer. The earliest known recipe for “Trifle” was published in a book called "The good housewife's Jewell" by Thomas Dawson. in 1596 in England. The ingredients for this first Trifle Recipe was thick cream flavoured with sugar, ginger and rosewater pored over slices of Sponge Cake. Sixty years later, milk custard was added to the list of ingredients and the custard was poured over alcohol-soaked bread.
A Trifle Pudding is often used for decoration as well as taste, incorporating the bright, layered colours of the fruit, jelly, jam, and the contrast of the creamy yellow custard and white cream. Some trifles contain a small amount of alcohol such as port, or, most commonly, sweet sherry or madeira wine. These Trifles are known as ‘TIPSY TRIFLES” The Non-alcoholic versions may, instead use fruit juices or soft drinks such as ginger ale, lemonade etc as the liquid is necessary to moisten the cake layers.
Trifle Puddings are often served in Anglo-Indian Homes at Christmas time, sometimes as a lighter alternative to the much denser Christmas pudding. No specific recipe need be followed for preparing a Trifle. It all depends on the availability of the ingredients. One can mix and match in a Trifle and just innovate. The contents of a trifle can be varied according to one’s choice. Here is a step by step Recipe for a simple Trifle.
300 grams sponge cake
4 tablespoons mixed fruit jam
1 large tin of canned mixed fruit or 2 cups of chopped fresh fruit of your choice
1 cup prepared jelly
500 ml fresh cream
500 ml whipped cream
1 cup prepared custard
1. Whip the fresh cream and whipped cream separately to soft peaks consistency
2. Drain the excess syrup from the canned fruits. Mix 2 tablespoons of jam to this fruit syrup and mix well. (If using Fresh Fruit then use a cup of apple juice or any other fruit juice). Divide the fruit into 3 portions
3. Using a sharp knife, slice the cake horizontally into a layer so that it fits the bottom of the bowl in which the pudding is to be set.
4. Spread the layer of cake liberally with jam.
5. Place the cake layer in the glass bowl and soak with the fruit syrup Press down firmly down.
6. Now spread a layer of the fruit over the soaked sponge cake layer.
7.Top this layer with one portion of the fresh Cream.
8. Repeat a second layer of the fruit.
9. Top this fruit layer with the custard
10. Repeat a third layer of fruit
10. Now spread a layer of whipped cream using a spatula.
11. Garnish with cubes of jelly, cut fresh fruit, cherries, walnuts etc.
Chill and serve when required.