English Trifle

A classic English dessert and yet again one of those desserts when mentioned in North America gets puzzled expressions on people’s faces. Thanks to Master Chef & Gordon Ramsay whose favourite dessert is Trifle, North Americans are now getting more familiar with this piece of art of a dessert. I’ve grown up having trifle for as long as I remember. My mother made the most absolute basic version of Trifle which was wonderful for us as kids. But my aunt introduced us to her trifle version a few years ago which is now the highlight of many family dinner parties. I have tried to replicate her version and given it my own twist. It is a wonderful dessert and a real winner at parties.

Cook the custard and let it cool
Layer the bottom of the bowl with slices of pound cake with jam side down
Add a layer of cooked dried apricot
Top with another layer of cake with jam side up this time
Now add a layer of chopped peach
Add another layer of cake on the top jam side down this time
For some tangyness add some baby mandarin
Top the mandarin generously with broken caramel – caramel crunch basically
Top with another layer of cake – no jam this time round, it’s sweet enough by now
Pour the custard all over and let the custard dribble through the cracks to reach all the way down to the bowl
Once the custard is set, top generously with flaked almonds and caramel crunch
Dive in!
1 Loaf Basic Pound Cake
1 small packet of dried apricots
Custard Powder
1 Can peach or Mandarin
Flaked Almonds
Strawberry or Raspberry Jam


  1. Make custard according to packet instructions. It should be slightly thick so it doesn’t settle to the bottom of the bowl. Prepare it overnight if possible
  2. Stew dried apricots without sugar in a little bit of water until the water has evaporated and the apricots are soft. Deseed.
  3. Cut cake into thin slices and apply Jam on one side of the cake. Layer the bottom of the Trifle Bowl, Jam side facing down.
  4. Spread a layer of stewed apricots and then add another layer of cake with Jam
  5. Next add a layer of peaches
  6. Finally pour the custard over the peaches slowly so you can let some of it dribble down to the base and fill up the empty spaces
  7. Add another layer of cake and pour some more custard on top
  8. Finally, whisk the double cream until it is smooth, a few stirs will do – DO NOT WHIP. Pour over the custard layer
  9. Break shards of Caramel and place them on top of the cream and sprinkle with flaked Almonds.
  10. For best results let it set in the fridge overnight so all the ingredients come together

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