Today I am going to a dinner party and have offered to take a dessert. I decided to make trifle. This is one of the first fancy desserts I learned to make in high school. Trifle is a cold English dessert consisting of sponge cake and fruit, topped with layers of Jello, custard and whipped cream.   You can use any fruit you like (eg. fresh berries) or use mixed fruit.  You can make a sherry trifle by soaking your cake in sherry.  When I was a teenager we lived on a farm and there was always an abundance of milk, eggs, butter and whipping cream- all the key ingredients in this dessert. Trifle has to be made in stages, so it is a little time consuming to make.  You have to make your cake, jello and custard in advance and you also need a couple of hours for everything to set.  It’s best to make trifle a day in advance.

To save time you can buy a store bought cake and canned custard. You can use sponge cake or Swiss Roll.  (swiss roll may also be known as jelly roll)

Swiss Roll


  • 3               eggs
  • 4               oz caster sugar (also known as Berry Sugar)
  • 4               oz flour
  • 1               tbsp hot water
  • 2               tbsp  Berry sugar for dredging
  • 2               tbsp warm jam to fill


  1. Whisk the eggs and sugar together in a bowl placed over a pan of hot water. Continue whisking until the mixture is thick and fluffy, and stiff enough to retain the impression of the whisk for a few seconds.
  2. Fold in the flour, very lightly with the hot water and a metal spoon.
  3. Pour the mixture into the greased and lined baking sheet.
  4. Bake in a preheated hot oven 425 degrees for 7 – 9 min.till golden and springy to the touch. Have ready a sheet of greaseproof paper liberally sprinkled with berry sugar. Turn the cake on to this and remove the lining paper.
  5. Using a sharp knife, trim off all the crisp outer edges, and quickly spread the surface of the roll with some warmed jam to within ½ inch of the edge.
  6. Make a long cut half- way through the sponge, 1” from the near end and roll up the sponge as tightly as possible, using the paper to help manipulate it. Cool on a wire rack.


Trifle Ingredients

  • 1                swiss Roll
  • 1-85           g  package lime jello
  • 1 –85         g package strawberry jello
  • 2 1/4          cup half and half
  • 2                tbsp custard powder
  • 3                tbsp sugar
  • 1                (398 ml) can fruit salad
  • 2                cups whipping cream


Make the Jello:

  1. Stir 1 cup boiling water into jello powder and stir till completely dissolved. Add a cup of cold water.
  2. Let the lime jello set. Strawberry jello can set on the fruit in the trifle bowl
  3. Slice the swiss roll into ½ “ slices and line a glass bowl. Put a couple of the slices in the bottom of the bowl. Drain the fruit and put this in the bowl. Add the strawberry jello on the fruit and let it set.
  4. When the strawberry jello is set, pour the cooled custard on it.
  5. Cube the lime jello and put it on the custard.
  6. Whip the cream till it is thick, spread this on the custard.
  7. Decorate with cut up fruit, nuts and or chocolate.

Make the custard:

On The Stove

  1. In a Medium saucepan boil 2 cups milk over a high heat.
  2. In a small bowl, mix the custard powder and sugar in a 1/4 cup of milk. 
  3. Add this to the hot milk, and cook on medium heat stirring constantly till the mixture thickens. 
  4. Pour it in a bowl, cover the custard  with plastic(to stop the skin forming)  and cool it in the fridge.

In the microwave

  1. Pour the milk in a large microwaveable bowl.  
  2. Microwave the milk on high for 5 minutes.
  3. In a small bowl mix the custard powder, sugar and 1.4 cup milk.  
  4. Pour this in the hot milk and microwave for 2 minutes, Stir and microwave for 2 more minutes.  The custard should be thick.
  5. Put the plastic on the custard(to stop forming a skin)
  6. Cool it in the fridge.

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