It seems we finally have something resembling summer weather here in Tasmania at the moment, and as it is very nearly December my mind naturally thinks about christmas desserts, not so much pudding, but rather pavlova and trifle. We always have trifle at christmas in my family, so I thought I’d share a very simple easy individual version here using some amazing strawberries I picked last weekend.
The Littlewood Strawberry farm is located on the road to Richmond and only just opened a few weeks ago for the first time ever. Not only is the landscape beautiful, the lambs tethered under a big sun umbrella super cute and Sophie the owner passionate about what she’s doing, but the strawberries themselves are also beautiful and tasty and juicy. Sophie did write me a list of the varieties she has but I seem to have lost it…Anyway my mum and I had a lovely time there and the car on the way back smelt amazing! I’d definitely recommend a visit and will be going back.
There are so many different ways of making trifle and so many different possible inclusions, I myself am partial to peaches and jelly. But this particular one I kept simple.
Vanilla bean custard
2 egg yolks
1 vanilla bean
100ml full fat milk, I used the Elgar milk with cream on top
200ml thick cream
1 teaspoon cornflour
50 grams of sugar
Add the milk and cream to a saucepan and add a split vanilla bean with the seeds scraped out and added. Over medium heat let it almost come to the boil.
In another bowl whisk the egg yolks, sugar and cornflower, add a little bit of the warm milk/cream and whisk in, then add a little more. Then put the egg mix in with the rest of the milk/cream in the saucepan. Cook over medium heat until the custard coats the back of a spoon and leave a clear space when you run your finger through it. Strain the custard into a bowl/jar for use allowing it to cool a little.
Into a saucepan add a cup of so of quartered strawberries and sprinkle with a little caster sugar (as much as you like, the strawberries I had were already sweet enough) and add a splash of orange juice (you could use an orange liqueur here – I would’ve done if I’d had some).
Cook on a medium to low heat until the strawberries are soft and the liquid has thickened a little.
I always tend to make use Stephanie Alexander’s recipe, which Maggie Beer shares here when I make sponge cake. But in all honesty, sometimes you can cheat and use a supermarket/bakery sponge.
Either way slice the cake when it’s cool and then cut into small-ish bite size pieces.
To make the trifle add alternative layers of sponge, strawberry compote, custard, fresh chopped strawberries and finish with a layer of whipped cream. Allow the trifle to sit in the fridge for half an hour or so before eating so it sets.