Trifle: Dessert with three different layers | British Cuisine


Trifle, in English cuisine, is a dessert made with fruit, a thin layer of sponge fingers soaked in sherry or another fortified wine, and custard. It can be topped with whipped cream. The fruit and sponge layers may be suspended in fruit-flavored jelly, and these ingredients are usually arranged to produce three or four layers. The contents of a trifle are highly variable; many varieties exists, some forging fruit entirely and instead using other ingredients, such as chocolate, coffee or vanilla.

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Trifle is served as a dessert. The place of origin of the trifle is meant to be England. The main ingredients involved in the trifle are sponge cake, custard, fruits, whipped cream, etc.

English Trifle
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Variations made in the Trifle:

Trifles may contain a small amount of alcohol, most commonly, sweet sherry or Madeira wine. Non-alcoholic versions use sweet juices or soft drinks such as ginger ale instead, as the liquid is necessary to moisten the cake and are simply known as fruit trifle without any mention of a spirit before the name of a trifle.

Beautifully decorated trifle
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One popular variant is sponge soaked in jelly when the trifle is made, which sets when refrigerated. The cake and jelly together and produce a pleasant texture if made in the correct proportions. Sponge cake can also be soaked in custard. Custard will enhance the taste of the cake and and add more sweetness.

Trifle served in glasses
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Three or more layered dessert-

A trifle is often used for decoration as well as taste, incorporating the bright, layered colors of the fruit, jelly, jam and the contrast of the creamy yellow custard and white cream. Trifles are often served at Christmas, sometime as a lighter alternative to much denser Christmas pudding.

English trifle served in glasses
Source: Internet

When we here the name Trifle, we are like- It must be hard to make. A dessert with three or more layers that looks so yum and well organised must be made with some heavy instruments or difficult techniques. But no, this not the truth. And after reading this recipe you will find it much easier than you might have thought.

Alcoholic Trifle
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Here I have given a very simple and easy recipe of the English Trifle. There are many variations in this recipe but still it tastes divine. Recipe given here is egg less and non- alcoholic. You can make this recipe and give it to your children, I am sure they will love it.

English trifle served in glasses
Source: Internet

Preparation Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Servings: 7 to 8 serves

Course: Dessert


  • Full fat milk- 1 litre
  • Custard powder- 6 tablespoon
  • Sugar 1/2 cup
  • Strawberry jelly- 1 cup
  • Pineapple jelly- 1 cup
  • Vanilla cake – 2 packs
  • Fruit juice- 1 cup
  • Apple- 1/2 cup (chopped)
  • Grapes- 1/2 cup (chopped)
  • Banana- 1/2 cup (chopped)
  • Mango- 1/2 cup (chopped)
  • Red grapes- 1/2 cup (chopped)
  • Whipping cream- 1 cup
  • Powdered sugar- 1/4 cup
  • Dry fruits- for garnishing (optional)

Directions for making Trifle-

Making custard

1.Take one litre milk in a pan and heat it. When milk comes to the boil, add 1/2 cup sugar and mix well.

heat the milk, add sugar and mix well. Boil it for 2-3 minutes
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2.Add 6 tablespoon custard powder in a bowl and make a paste of it by adding some milk. Make a smooth paste, without any lumps.

Make a smooth custard paste by adding milk in the custard powder
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3.Add custard paste into the milk and stir mix well. Boil the custard for 1-2 minutes and then switch off the flame. When the custard comes to the room temperature, take it out in a bowl and refrigerate it for about an hour.

add custard paste slowly in the milk and stir well.
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Whipping cream

1.Take whipping cream in a bowl, add 1/4 cup sugar and start whipping it. Whip it till the cream becomes double its size.

Add sugar in the cream and Whip the cream
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Assembling of the Trifle

1.Take a serving dish or bowl. Cover the bottom of the dish with vanilla cake chopped in slices. Then pour the fruit juice on top of it. This will help to make the cake moist. Make sure all the slices of cake are covered with the juice.

place slices of cake at the bottom of the serving dish and pour juice.
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2.Now add a layer of strawberry and pineapple jelly. Then apply a layer of custard on top of jellies.

add a layer of jellies and then add a layer of custard
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3.Chop the fruits and dust them with some powdered sugar and add the chopped fruits on top of the custard layer. Now apply another layer of the custard on the fruits.

Dust chopped fruits with powdered sugar and add it on top of custard layer. Then apply one more layer of custard
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4.Apply the layer of whipped cream on top of the custard layer. Apply it carefully, cream should no be mixed with the custard.

apply a layer of whipped cream on top of the trifle
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5.Decorate the Trifle with some chopped dry fruits, fruits and jellies. Refrigerate it for 1-2 hours.

Decorate trifle with dry fruits and jellies
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6.Trifle is ready to serve.

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Tips and variations:

  • You can add fruits of your own choice, like- , pineapples, pomegranate strawberries, etc.
  • You can add jellies of your own choice.
  • If you want to make your trifle look more attractive, you can add some tutti fruity on top of it.
  • If you don’t have vanilla flavored cake, you can use any other.
  • You can use juice of any flavor like- orange, mixed fruit, guava, etc.
  • While applying layer of cream on custard make sure you don’t mix both of the layers. If you mix them, the layers won’t be distinct it will taste less.
  • Make sure that all the slices of cake are covered with the juice. Juice will make the cake soft, which will give a nice texture and flavor to the Trifle.
Trifle of more than three layers, presented beautifully
Source: Internet