Tuesday Tip : Berry Trifle

I knew I was going to write this post while I was making this treat for our neighborhood's annual summer picnic, so I took a few pictures before heading off the festivities.  Well, I didn't know there was an entree and dessert contest this year!  And this little beauty won!  So, these are from before she was famous...

Trifle is such an easy dessert to make.  Don't let that mislead you, though, because it is delicious and makes a beautiful presentation when served in a...are you ready?...trifle bowl!  Pretty clever name, eh?  Well, that's what they're called.  Don't hurt the messenger.

So, here's my recipe. I've tried lots of different ones and have adopted bits and pieces over the years until coming up with this one that we use pretty regularly. That is, unless we are out of something and need to do some substituting. Trifle is pretty forgiving and always yummy.  You can use real custard for a decadent treat or whipped topping for a lighter dessert instead the mixture in the recipe.  I just added the ginger jelly about a year ago when I was low on orange marmalade, and I love it!  I add it every time now.

Berry Trifle

1 pound/loaf cake or angel food cake, depending on how you are feeling and whether you want low cal (loaf..well, lowER) or low fat (angel)
1 pkg (3.3 oz) instant white chocolate pudding mix
1 pkg (3.3 oz) instant cheesecake pudding mix
3 cups light whipped topping
2 1/3 cup skim milk
3/4 cup of orange marmalade
3 tablespoons ginger jelly (leave out if you don't like ginger, but this gives the trifle that special flavor)
6-8 cups fresh berries, cut into bite size pieces (strawberries, blueberries, black berries, raspberries or any fruit you have on hand)

Prepare pudding mixes together according to directions, but only use 2 1/3 cups milk total.
Fold whipped topping into pudding to make a light custard.  Chill for 30 minutes.
Cut cake horizontally in 3-4 thin layers.
Mix orange marmalade and ginger jelly in a microwave safe bowl and heat until spreadable, 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Lay out slices of cake and spread or brush orange-ginger sauce generously on each slice.
(The rest is messy.  Wash hands after each cake layer to keep your trifle looking spiffy.)
Cut cake slices into bite size pieces about 1" by 1."
Place one layer of cake pieces in bottom of trifle bowl.  Cover with layer of berries and then a layer of the custard.
Repeat twice for a total of three layers, reserving some berries for garnish if desired.
Chill if you can stand it.  If not, enjoy right away!

If you want your own trifle bowl, this one is from Pampered Chef.  It has a lid and a removable pedestal that stores inside.
We've had a few trifle bowls over the years (did I mention that I REALLY love trifle?), and this one is, by far, my favorite.
If you are local, Mechelle Uhl's site is here, and if you are not, Katie Arthur's site is here.

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