Posted by Grace Massa Langlois on Friday, 4th March 2011
My daughter, Liana, stocked our refrigerator with an assortment of berries this week. My favourite way to eat strawberries is really quite simple; I add freshly whipped cream. But these strawberries had a different destiny in store. That’s because soon after they arrived home, I started flipping through the Donna Hay Magazine and she had a huge spread on Trifles. That’s when I decided to make Strawberry Shortcake Trifle.
Why strawberries? I mean it doesn’t make sense to make this dessert in March, especially noting that our growing season isn’t until June/July. Well for one, these out-of-season strawberries were especially sweet and juicy and two, that magazine cover grabbed my attention – flawless Strawberry and Vanilla Macaron Trifle.
You may be asking, “If the cover grabbed your attention why not make the featured recipe?” Well, I have a fear of making macarons! I can’t count the amount of times I’ve purchased all the ingredients, aged the egg whites and then at the last minute decided against it.
If it’s anything like trying to achieve the “perfect” Italian Amaretti cookie I am in big trouble. It baffles me, how my Mother, using the same recipe, can make these beautiful little gems. And me? Well not so much! My Amaretti end up twice the size, flat and looking more like a Florentine.
And what’s the main reason for making Strawberry Shortcake in March? We are big “Jell-O” lovers, especially when it’s topped with whipped cream. This trifle also gave me the opportunity to try Donna’s Strawberry Jelly. The recipe called for cranberry juice, a little odd I thought. But with all the fresh strawberries layered in the jelly it actually tasted like strawberries with just a hint of tartness.
I would’ve been content stopping right there; the jelly was so tasty. In fact, I even made a few jelly desserts without the cake (knowing my son as well as I do, they won’t last long!).
But I’m happy I continued with the dessert. At first glance, although striking, with its layer of Strawberry Jelly that reminds me of a coveted ruby red gem, especially against the white Sweetened Whipped Cream, it’s even more elegant, because nestled inside, hidden within the cloud of fluffy cream, is a decadent layer of sponge; a wonderful surprise!
Strawberry Shortcake Trifle
Makes 6 Strawberry Shortcake Trifle Desserts (6 X 8-ounce cup capacity) & 4 Strawberry-Cranberry Jelly Desserts (4 X 8-ounce cup capacity)
- Strawberry Jelly
- Sweetened Whipped Cream
- Angel Food Cake – Store-bought or homemade
(From Donna Hay Magazine – Issue 54)
- 500 g (2 heaping cups) fresh strawberries, sliced
- 2½ teaspoons gelatine powder
- 3 cups (750 ml) cranberry juice
- ½ cup caster (superfine granules) sugar
- Wash, hull and slice the strawberries. Refrigerate until ready to assemble trifles.
- Place the gelatine and ½ cup cranberry juice in a bowl and stir to combine. Set aside for 5 minutes or until the gelatine is absorbed.
- Place the remaining cranberry juice and sugar in a small-sized saucepan over medium heat and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
- Bring to the boil and cook for 1 minute.
- Remove from heat, add the gelatine and stir to combine.
- Transfer the jelly to a heatproof pouring vessel. Set aside to cool for 20 minutes.
- Remove the strawberries from the refrigerator. Arrange the strawberries in the base of the dessert cups and pour over the jelly mixture.
- Refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours until set.
Sweetened Whipped Cream
Assembling Strawberry Shortcake Trifle
- Using a serrated knife cut 6 slices (1.9-cm /¾-inch wide) of Angel Food Cake. Using a cookie cutter cut the Angel Food Cake to fit in the base of the dessert cup and place on top of the set strawberry jelly.
- Transfer the Sweetened Whipped Cream to a large pastry bag fitted with a large plain tip.
- Pipe the Sweetened Whipped Cream around and on top of the Angel Food Cake round. Using the back of a demitasse spoon spread the whipped cream to smooth out the layer (making sure cake round is completely covered).
- Change plain tip to a decorative tip, pipe a decorative mound in the centre.
- Garnish with sliced strawberries and serve.
Tags: after school treat, dessert, desserts, desserts for entertaining, desserts in glasses, Donna Hay recipes, entertaining, food, food photography, food photos, fruit, individual dessert, individual desserts, layered desserts, parfait, quick desserts, strawberries, Summer desserts, trifle, verrines
Posted in Baking & Pastry, Baking Mise en Place, Basics, Custards, Creams & Mousses, Dolci al Cucchiaio, Dolci alla Frutta, Fillings, Frostings & Dessert Sauces, Fruit Desserts, Mini Desserts, Piccola Pasticceria, Recipes, Ricette di Base, Spoon Desserts