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Classic trifle

  • 750g frozen summer fruit (raspberries, blackberries, red and blackcurrants)
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 9 sheets leaf gelatine Gelatine jell-ah-teenA colourless, tasteless and odourless setting agent made from the boiled bones, skins and…
  • 75g custard powder
  • 1.2l milk Milk mill-kOne of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…
  • 1½-2 madeira cake, cubed
  • 4 tbsp sherry or cassis
  • 300-450ml double cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar
  • 2 crushed amaretti biscuits, to serve
  • Put the fruit in a pan with 200g sugar and 1 litre water and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook for 2 mins, then scoop out 6 tbsp fruit and 150ml juice. Now carry on cooking the fruit in the pan for 5 mins.
  • Meanwhile, soak the gelatine in cold water to soften it. If you have a hand blender, blitz the cooked fruit or mash with a potato masher, then strain through a sieve into a large bowl and push through the pulp so just the skins and seeds are left. Squeeze excess water from the gelatine, add to the hot fruit syrup and stir to dissolve. Cool, then chill until on the point of almost setting.
  • Make the custard according to pack instructions with the custard powder, milk and 50g sugar to create a really thick custard. Cover the surface with baking paper while it cools a little.
  • Pile the cake into a trifle bowl, spoon over the reserved juice and berries, then the Sherry. Pour over a thick layer of custard, pushing it against the side of the dish to seal in the cake below. Leave to cool and set with a skin – this makes a barrier for the jelly.
  • When the custard is cold and set, and the jelly is on the point of setting, spoon the jelly over the custard and chill until ready to complete.
  • Whip the cream with the vanilla and icing sugar until just holding its shape, then spoon round the bowl over the set jelly. Scatter with the crushed biscuits and chill until ready to serve.