Monday, December 24, 2012

Nicole’s Lemon-Raspberry Trifle

As another small gift to you, I have a third blog today, offering a recipe for a spectacular dessert that I recently made for a friend’s holiday party. It was simple, quick, and showy, and I’m pleased to say that I came up with the combination myself. 

Lemon-Raspberry Trifle: Just in time for the holidays!
To prepare this Lemon-Raspberry Trifle, I used more of the frozen lemon cake I told you about in my Oct. 16 blog. A purchased sponge cake or lemon cake made from a mix will do just fine. At this very busy time of year, my goal was not to do too much work while preparing something that looked like a million bucks! 

With many people at the party, I used a large bowl suitable for a large trifle. I’d estimate that the quantities below would easily serve 20-to-25 people. For smaller gatherings, use half the specified amounts (divided for layering), but don’t make such a small trifle that guests feel guilty about wanting more! Trifle is a layered dessert. That’s why most of the ingredients are divided.

Nicole’s Lemon-Raspberry Trifle:

1 single-layer lemon or sponge cake, dried and cubed, divided 
¼ c. sherry, divided
2 c. lemon spread or lemon curd spread, divided (see Note
¾ c. (12 tbsp.) raspberry jam or jelly, divided
1 c. full-fat eggnog
1 c. milk (I used skim)
Half a 5 oz. (135 g) pkg cook-and-serve pudding and pie filling mix (see Further Note), divided
One 6-oz. (170 g) pkg. firm, fresh raspberries, divided
2 c. whipping cream (“heavy cream”), divided
¼ c. icing sugar (“confectioners” or “powdered” sugar), divided

For Top of Trifle:

2 tbsp. flaked almonds, toasted (see Index for How to Toast Nuts)
¼ c. (4 tbsp.) raspberry jam or jelly
Holly berries and leaves, as garnish (optional)

Spread dried, cubed cake in a single layer in straight-sided glass bowl or trifle dish. 

Sprinkle half of sherry over cake.

Top with half of lemon spread, dotting with half of jam or jelly. 

Combine eggnog, milk, and half-a-package of pudding mix. Cook according to package directions, cooling at room temperature. Spread or pour half of cooled pudding or custard over lemon and jam.

Dot with 10 or 12 raspberries.

Whip cream and icing sugar to stiff peaks. Spread half over dotted raspberries.

Repeat layering as above, ending with pudding mix or custard and omitting raspberries.

Spread with remaining whipped cream and flaked, toasted almonds. Set aside to chill (In the Time Zone and at the Latitude where I live, I place the trifle on the patio, covering it with a large pot).

Melt reserved jam or jelly over low heat in a small pot. If using jam, strain seeds after jam warms. Cool warmed jelly or strained jam to room temperature. No more than two hours before serving, roll berries in cooled jam or jelly, coating well to glaze.  Using two forks, transfer berries to parchment paper. Chill to set glaze.

Shortly before serving, position glazed berries evenly over trifle. Center sprig of holly berries and leave on trifle, ensuring berries do not touch cream (some varieties can cause nausea and vomiting, Dollinks). Remove berry sprig immediately after trifle is presented to guests.

Note: I’ve said these words before, but they bear repeating. There are lemon spreads, and there are lemon spreads. My favorite - for its color and its spreadability - is the E.D. Smith brand, sold North America-wide. E.D. Smith simply calls this “lemon,” leaving off the “curd” part. Believe me, Dollinks, I am not being paid to say this! Its just a plain and simple fact. 

Further Note: I used Jell-O pudding and pie filling mix, though you can also use Bird’s custard mix or homemade custard. You’ll want to end up with 2 c. for a large trifle, and 1 c. for a smaller one.

Sprinkle half dried, cubed cake with half sherry
Top with half lemon spread and half raspberry jelly or jam 

Top with half pudding or custard, half berries, half cream.
Repeat layering, omitting berries. Sprinkle with almonds

Warm jam or jelly to liquefy

Strain seeds from warmed jam; cool at room temperature

Roll berries in cooled jelly, coating well to glaze
Rest coated berries on parchment. Chill to set glaze

Presenting ...

Your finished Lemon-Raspberry Trifle! Happy Holidays!

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