Pimms Drenched Berry Trifle

I’m not a big fan of desserts. Anyone who has a copy of my book will have noticed that the treats section is a lot smaller than the savoury sections. Anyone who works with me may have noticed that I don’t often eat much if any of the cakes I bring in. I made this recently when a friend came over for dinner. I didn’t eat it so I can’t say whether it is tasty or not but my friend liked it. I saw a similar pudding being made when I was at the Vegetarian Cookery School recently using plums soaked in Grappa. But with Grappa being almost £40 a bottle I thought I would try it using blackberries I picked late summer and froze along with some Pimms left over from our rather cold and miserable summer.

A good few handfuls of raspberries and the same of blackberries. You could also use blueberries, redcurrants. You could gently heat this just to help the fruit to release the juices.
1 medium glass Pimms
2-3 tablespoons caster sugar
1 pack of trifle sponge, Madeira cake or home made Victoria sponge
250g Mascarpone
250g half fat creme fraiche
1-2 tablespoons icing sugar
100g whole hazelnuts
2-3 more tablespoons caster sugar

Put the fruit in a bowl and add the caster sugar and Pimms. Leave for at least an hour.

Take another bowl and a seive and strain the fruit from the juice/Pimms.

Take a mixing bowl and mix the icing sugar with the mascarpone and creme fraiche.

Now caramelise the hazelnuts. Take a small non stick pan and place on a high heat. Add the hazelnuts and sugar and stir continuously until the sugar has melted. Keep stiring until the nuts are nicely coated in the caramelised sugar then lay out onto greaseproof paper to cool.

Now start building the trifle. Take a nice glass bowl. Soak pieces of sponge in the fruit juice and Pimms mixture and cover the bottom of the bowl. Put half the fruit over the sponge then cover with half the cream mixture. Now add another layer of the sponge, soaking it first in the juice and Pimms. Then the rest of the fruit and then the rest of the cream. Roughly chop the caramelised nuts and sprinkle over the top.

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