(c) J. Casper 2011
In my family, a festive occasion is never complete without a sherry trifle – home-made, of course! We have a family recipe from my aunt’s mother-in-law, who was very particular about her recipe. She never, ever used fruit, and would frown upon versions that had superfluous ingredients. We have them for all manner of get-togethers, and a party wouldn’t be the same without one.
She passed her secret recipe onto my aunt. I have never asked her the exact recipe, but she has given me enough hints and tips that I have been able to come up with a good enough approximation. The exact recipe remains a closely guarded secret. Well, at least I imagine it that way, it seems nice to have a recipe that gets passed on to only a select few!
I have been meaning to post about the one that I made for our international dinner, but I had so much to post from Australia and since then, this is the first opportunity that I have had. I figure that this recipe is good for any party, and what better excuse than on your next snow day? Given the weather at the moment, I’m sure you won’t have to wait that long for the next one!
This version of sherry trifle has a few main differences to my normal one. Firstly, following our mince pie and mulled wine party, we had half a panetone left over that someone brought. I hate to waste things, so it seemed the perfect way to use this was to add it to the trifle instead of the usual sponge.
Secondly, I sent the Big Guy off to buy the sherry, and he came back with Pedro Ximinez. It does fit the brief of a sweet sherry, but it is much more interesting than the usual cream sherry, so beloved of elderly ladies, that is traditional in the family one.
Thirdly, the jam is usually strawberry or raspberry. I didn’t have any of those, and so I used some of the blueberry jam I had left from a trip to Sweden.
I am not sure that these amendments would have met the approval of the originator of the recipe, but it was certainly appreciated by my guests at our international christmas dinner!
Recipe: Sherry Trifle
6 egg yolks
100 g sugar
500 ml double cream
500 ml milk
½ vanilla pod
150 g panetone, cut into strips and spread with jam
100 ml sherry
200 ml whipping cream for the topping
Firstly, you need to make a custard. It also need to be fairly thick, so I use half milk and cream. Normal custards can be made with just milk, but this one needs to hold up when you serve it, and not run everywhere, so the cream is necessary here.
You can make the custard using the step-by-step guide that I posted yesterday.
Set the custard aside to cool completely. If you can chill it overnight, so much the better.
Spread the jam on the panetone, and place it in the bottom of the serving dish. My traditional sherry trifle is served in a large bowl, from which everyone is served, but you can also arrange it into glasses for individual servings. Add the sherry to the sponge, and leave aside to soak in for 20 minutes.
Add the custard on top of the panetone. Spread it so it is as even as possible, but leave about 2-3 cm at the top of the bowl.If you are not going to serve this immediately, chill it again.
Just before serving, whip some cream to stiff peaks, and put it on top of the custard.
This is not a lightweight dessert, but it is a great treat. Especially for a celebration.