Trifle is one of those desserts that you either love or hate. Many people have a tough time accepting the texture of it; a blend of sponge cake, layered with fruit, jelly, custard, cream and a load of brightly coloured toppings.
Perhaps what makes one averse to it, is the fact that trifle often isn't prepared how it traditionally should be. We had a giggle watching this old episode of FRIENDS where Rachel tries to make an English trifle. Poor thing!
In order to avoid having a Rachel situation on your hands this Christmas, we asked British chef, Matt Manning of One Ingredient to share a few of his top tips to making a great trifle. Here they are...
The first is obvious, make sure there is enough sherry! Some for the trifle and some for the chef! My nan used to soak her sponge overnight so it gives a good kick to end off a hearty Christmas dinner!
2. Homemade custard
Never cut corners in the kitchen just because it is Christmas and you think you are too busy. A delicious, thick, creamy vanilla custard can give your dessert the cutting edge. And it isn’t that hard to make!
Another thing my Nan used to do, was to cover the top layer in Hundreds and Thousands. No trifle is complete with out it.
Freshly picked strawberries make the perfect fruit for your trifle. I had some amazing fresh, ripe ones just last week that were picked in Stellenbosch - so if you are serious about making a kick-ass trifle, go the extra mile for the best ingredients.
Make your trifle as individual portions using small glass console jars. Not only does this look great because you can see the layers of sponge, fruit, cream and custard... but it also makes less mess and there is less wastage.
Vote for gammon or trifle in our #festivefood war by clicking here.
Follow Matt Manning on Twitter @MattManningChef