Sharing a seriously fun love for food

Summer Berry Trifle

Summer Berry Trifle

Layers of plump blueberries and bright red strawberries tucked in between fluffy clouds of vanilla custard and slices of tender pound cake. Topped with a billowing wave of whipped cream and mascarpone cheese with a splash of Cointreau, it’s grand enough for a celebration!

Trifles are a classic dessert with English roots but somehow they feel quite Southern, akin to banana pudding. They are simply layers of custard, slices of pound or sponge cake, fruit and a generous topping of whipped cream.

I learned early on from my Mom that it’s never a bad idea to keep a pound cake in the freezer, and our favorite Sour Cream Pound Cake at that! They keep beautifully, thaw quickly and are lifesavers if company drops in on you.

The beauty of a trifle – you can make everything from scratch or shortcut parts and pieces. If you don’t have a pound cake in the freezer or have time to bake one, then by all means pick up one at your favorite bakery.

For the custard I use the same basic recipe I use for our cream puffs. Milk and eggs blended with sugar, flour and butter with a touch of pure vanilla. Fold in whipped cream and it’s absolutely luscious. Custard is not all that time consuming to make but in a pinch you can grab a mix at the market and move things along. Add a bit of pure vanilla extract plus the whipped cream and you’re well on your way.

The backdrop of this trifle has notes of orange from a gorgeous splash of Cointreau and highlights of vanilla and almond. These bright notes play well with the blueberries and strawberries, but raspberries, blackberries – even peaches create delicious results.

Call some friends, light a sparkler and share this luscious dessert!

Summer Berry Trifle

For the trifle:

1 pound cake – use your favorite or try our Sour Cream Pound Cake

Powdered sugar and extra blueberries for garnish

For the custard:

2 cups milk

2 extra-large eggs

¾ cups sugar

¼ cup flour

1 tablespoon butter, room temperature

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 cup heavy cream, whipped

Pour the milk into the top of a double boiler. Set it over a pan of simmering water over medium heat. Warm the milk for about 15 minutes or until it has scalded or reached a temperature of about 180-degrees. While the milk is heating beat the eggs until they are light and thickened, about 3 minutes.

Add the sugar, the flour, the butter and the kosher salt. Beat until the mixture is smooth.

Pour the egg mixture into the scalded milk and continue cooking over medium heat.

Cook until the custard is thick and coats the back of a spoon. Stir frequently so the custard stays smooth while it’s cooking.

Spoon the custard into a heatproof dish and let it cool for about 10 minutes then stir in the vanilla.

Place a piece of food wrap directly on top of the custard then place another piece of wrap over the dish. Chill for about 2 hours. The food wrap placed directly on the custard prevents a film from forming on top as it cools.

Fold the whipped cream into the chilled custard.

For the berries:

2 pints of fresh blueberries

2 pounds of fresh strawberries

½ cup sugar

2 tablespoons Cointreau

Rinse and sort the blueberries and set aside to dry.

Rinse and stem the strawberries. Slice the berries in half and cover with the sugar and Cointreau. Stir to mix together. Let the strawberries rest for about 30 to 45 minutes.

For the lemon syrup:

¼ cup fresh lemon juice, about 1-1/2 lemons

¼ cup water

½ cup sugar

Pour the lemon juice and the water into a small saucepan. Add the sugar. Warm over medium heat, stirring until the sugar has dissolved, about 5 minutes.

For the whipped cream topping:

1 cup heavy cream

¼ cup powdered sugar

¼ cup mascarpone cheese

¼ teaspoon almond extract

2 tablespoons Cointreau

Beat the cream on medium speed just until the cream starts to thicken.

Add the powdered sugar along with the mascarpone cheese, almond extract and Cointreau. Continue beating until the cream forms stiff peaks. Chill while you assemble the trifle.

To assemble the trifle:

Slice the pound cake into thin slices, about ¼” each, ½” if you want thicker slices in the trifle. Dip a pastry brush into the lemon syrup and brush one side of the cake with the syrup.

Line the bottom of a trifle dish or large bowl with a single layer of the pound cake, cutting or overlapping to fit. Top with a third of the custard, spreading to cover the cake.

Spread a layer of blueberries over the custard. Top with another layer of the sliced pound cake.

Spoon another third of the custard on top of the cake, spreading to cover. Line the edge of the dish with a row of strawberries and spread a layer of strawberries over the top of the custard.

Add another layer of pound cake, followed by the remaining custard. Top with blueberries.

Place another layer of pound cake on the blueberries, line the edge of the dish with another row of strawberries and spread remaining strawberries across the top of the cake.

Spread the whipped cream over the top of the strawberries.

Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, about 4 to 6 hours or overnight. Garnish with a handful of blueberries and dust with powdered sugar before serving.

Summer Berry Trifle, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

July 3, 2019
: Serves 8.

Layers of plump blueberries and bright red strawberries tucked in between fluffy clouds of vanilla custard and slices of tender pound cake. Topped with a billowing wave of whipped cream and mascarpone cheese with a splash of Cointreau, it’s grand enough for a celebration!

By:

Ingredients
  • For the trifle:
  • 1 pound cake
  • Powdered sugar and extra blueberries for garnish
  • For the pudding:
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • ¾ cups sugar
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon butter, room temperature
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup heavy cream, whipped
  • For the berries:
  • 2 pints of fresh blueberries
  • 2 pounds of fresh strawberries
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Cointreau
  • For the lemon syrup:
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice, about 1-1/2 lemons
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup sugar
  • For the whipped cream topping:
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup mascarpone cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 tablespoons Cointreau
Directions
  • Step 1 For the custard:
  • Step 2 Pour the milk into the top of a double boiler. Set it over a pan of simmering water over medium heat. Warm the milk for about 15 minutes or until it has scalded or reached a temperature of about 180-degrees.
  • Step 3 While the milk is heating beat the eggs until they are light and thickened, about 3 minutes.
  • Step 4 Add the sugar, the flour, the butter and the kosher salt. Beat until the mixture is smooth.
  • Step 5 Pour the egg mixture into the scalded milk and continue cooking over medium heat, until the custard is thick and coats the back of a spoon. Stir frequently so the custard stays smooth while it’s cooking.
  • Step 6 Spoon the custard into a heatproof dish and let it cool for about 10 minutes then stir in the vanilla.
  • Step 7 Place a piece of food wrap directly on top of the custard then place another piece of wrap over the dish. Chill for about 2 hours. The food wrap placed directly on the custard prevents a film from forming on top as it cools.
  • Step 8 Fold the whipped cream into the chilled custard.
  • Step 9 For the berries:
  • Step 10 Rinse and sort the blueberries and set aside to dry.
  • Step 11 Rinse and stem the strawberries. Slice the berries in half and cover with the sugar and Cointreau. Stir to mix together. Let the strawberries rest for about 30 to 45 minutes.
  • Step 12 For the lemon syrup:
  • Step 13 Pour the lemon juice and the water into a small saucepan. Add the sugar. Warm over medium heat, stirring until the sugar has dissolved, about 5 minutes.
  • Step 14 For the whipped cream topping:
  • Step 15 Beat the cream on medium speed just until the cream starts to thicken. Add the powdered sugar along with the mascarpone cheese, almond extract and Cointreau. Continue beating until the cream forms stiff peaks. Chill while you assemble the trifle.
  • Step 16 To assemble the trifle:
  • Step 17 Slice the pound cake into thin slices, about ¼” each, ½” if you want thicker slices in the trifle. Dip a pastry brush into the lemon syrup and brush one side of the cake with the syrup.
  • Step 18 Line the bottom of a trifle dish or large bowl with a single layer of the pound cake, cutting or overlapping to fit.
  • Step 19 Top with a third of the custard, spreading to cover the cake.
  • Step 20 Spread a layer of blueberries over the custard. Top with another layer of the sliced pound cake.
  • Step 21 Spoon another third of the custard on top of the cake, spreading to cover.
  • Step 22 Line the edge of the dish with a row of strawberries and spread a layer of strawberries over the top of the custard.
  • Step 23 Add another layer of pound cake, followed by the remaining custard. Top with blueberries.
  • Step 24 Place another layer of pound cake on the blueberries, line the edge of the dish with another row of strawberries and spread remaining strawberries across the top of the cake.
  • Step 25 Spread the whipped cream over the top of the strawberries.
  • Step 26 Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, about 4 to 6 hours or overnight.
  • Step 27 Garnish with a handful of blueberries and dust with powdered sugar before serving.


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