From The Straits Times Archives: A Brandy Trifle recipe for Christmas

Brandy trifle.
Brandy trifle.PHOTO: ST FILE


By Veronica Zuzarte-Robertson, a partner in a PR consultancy firm

This recipe was first published in The Sunday Times on Dec 14, 2014.


    By Veronica Zuzarte-Robertson, a partner in a PR consultancy firm

  • Ingredients:

    1 long vanilla Swiss roll or any sponge cake, available from neighbourhood bakeries

    15 strawberries, washed, dried and halved

    One 825g can of halved peaches in syrup

    150ml brandy, or more to taste

    125g blueberries, washed and dried

    1 litre full-cream milk

    6 heaped Tbs custard powder

    4 Tbs sugar

    2 85g sachet of strawberry jelly crystals

    2 cups hot water

    2 cups icy cold water

  • To serve:

    Evaporated milk

    Pouring cream


1. Cut the Swiss roll into slices about 2 to 3cm-thick.

2. Line the bottom of a glass bowl with a flat base (about 20 to 25cm in diameter) with the slices of cake. Pack them in tightly, making sure there are no gaps. Place about 15 strawberry halves along the sides of the bowl, wedged between the slices of cake to keep them in place. Reserve the remaining strawberries to decorate the trifle.

3. Drain peaches from the syrup. Weigh out 350g of the syrup and add 3 Tbs of brandy to it and stir. Refrigerate. Cut each peach half into four.

4. Remove the brandied syrup from fridge and add remaining brandy, or more to taste. Stir. Pour the syrup over the cake base, enough to ensure that each slice is well soaked. Layer the peaches on the cake, reserving some to decorate the top of the trifle.

5. Make the first batch of jelly. Place the jelly crystals in a clean, heat-proof bowl. Add one cup of hot water and stir continuously until the crystals dissolve. Add one cup of cold water and stir until well combined.

6. Pour the jelly mixture over fruit and cake. Place bowl in freezer for 1 hour to set.

7. Meanwhile, make the custard. Measure 1/2 cup of the milk and set it aside. Pour the remaining milk into a saucepan over medium heat.

8. In a clean bowl, mix custard powder and sugar until well combined. Add the 1/2 cup of milk and stir well.

9. When the milk in the saucepan begins to boil, add some to the custard powder mixture and mix until it dissolves.

10. Add the custard powder mixture to the saucepan of milk and stir continuously over medium heat for five to six minutes, or until custard thickens.

11. Remove from heat and leave to cool for about five minutes.

12. Remove the trifle bowl from the freezer. Gently spoon the cooled custard over the layer of jelly. Drizzle a little more brandy over the custard if you like.

13. Scatter the blueberries onto the layer of custard. Do not worry if they sink.

14. Place the bowl in the refrigerator to set for at least four to five hours, or overnight.

15. Place the remaining fruit on the custard.

16. Prepare the second packet of jelly by repeating Step 5.

17. Gently pour the jelly mixture over the back of a spoon onto the trifle, being careful to keep the fruit in place.

18. Place the bowl in the fridge to set for at least another five hours, or overnight.

19. Serve cold, with cream or evaporated milk on the side. Keep brandy handy for those who like their trifle with a bit more kick.

Serves eight to 10.