Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Strawberry Trifle

I made this trifle for Mother's Day, it was delicious! It was the first time that I made pastry cream. I don't know why I have always felt intimidated with pastry cream, It really was fairly easy. Actually, the angel food cake was more of a challenge. I'm always worried that I'm going to underbeat, or overbeat the egg whites.
Strawberry Trifle

1 10 inch angel food cake, cut 1 by 1 inch
(I used Barefoot Contessa's, omitting the lemon and glaze )
1 quart fresh strawberries, rinsed and then sliced
(reserve 3 whole strawberries for garnish)
2 Tablespoons powdered sugar
pastry cream
1 cup whipped cream

Pastry Cream

2 cups whole milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 large egg yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 cup heavy cream

In a small stainless steel bowl, mix the sugar, and egg yolks with a wooden spoon. Sift the cornstarch into egg mixture, mixing well. Set aside. In a medium saucepan combine the milk and vanilla on medium heat until boiling. Remove from heat and slowly add to egg mixture, tempering the eggs, whisking constantly. Pour through a strainer, back into the saucepan, and continue to cook over medium heat until boiling, whisking constantly. When mixture begins to boil, whisk for another 30 to 60 seconds until it becomes thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and immediately pour into a clean bowl and cover the surface with plastic wrap to prevent a crust from forming. Cool, then refrigerate a few hours until cold. Before assembling trifle, softly whip the 1/2 cup heavy cream, and fold into the cold pastry cream.

To assemble the Trifle:
Rinse and slice the berries and place in a bowl with the powdered sugar. Set aside.
Cut angel food cake 1 x 1 inch pieces. Arrange a layer of cake pieces in the bottom of a trifle or large glass bowl. Spoon half the berries over the cake. Spoon some of the custard over the berries. Repeat layering, ending with the custard. Best if it sits for a couple of hours. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Remove trifle from refrigerator about 1 hour before serving.

Whipping Cream

1 cup very cold heavy cream
1 to 2 Tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon cornstarch

Just before serving the trifle, make the whipped cream:
In a chilled bowl, with chilled beaters, beat cream until thickened. Add the sugar, cornstarch and vanilla. Continue to beat until the cream begins to thicken. Watch the cream carefully. Do not overbeat. Decorate with large dollops of whipped cream, sealing to the edge of the bowl to keep the moisture in the cake. Top with the 3 reserved whole strawberries.


  1. My sister-in-law made this for Mother's Day! It was SO YUMMY!!!!

  2. I love how you swirled the cream on top. I love to play with flour but my presentation needs a whole lot of work:) Well, usually not one person complains ..well not to my face:)

  3. Sounds de-lish! I just finally bought a trifle dish, so I look forward to trying this.

  4. Hi Alice....good to you you back posting...this dessert looks terrific...I have a trifle bowl that I have never used i will have to try it...Did you use a pastry bag and tip for the whipped cream...

  5. Hi Sue, Thanks! Yes I did use a pastry bag and star tip for the whipped cream ;)

  6. oooh... i love trifle... this looks yummy!!

  7. Oh Alice this is MOTH's absolute favourite dessert! I've never made it for him, as it was his Mother's signature dish & wouldn't haved dared usurp her as a DIL. She went to MIL Heaven last year, so maybe it's time to give him a treat. Your recipe looks spectacular.
    Millie ^_^