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Strawberry Mascarpone Layered Trifle

A light berry trifle with Italian mascarpone custard.

December 20, 2017

Strawberry Mascarpone Layered Trifle

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Strawberry Mascarpone Trifle

ingredients for six

frosted strawberries
6 x small strawberries
40gm white chocolate
berry purée
500gm strawberries
100gm raspberries (frozen is fine)
2 Tbsp caster sugar
1tsp vanilla paste or extract
sponge layer
450gm Madeira sponge (homemade or purchased)
60ml Cointreau
mascarpone custard
3 x egg yolks
25gm cornflour
20gm plain flour
¼ tsp vanilla paste
50ml milk
250ml milk extra
100gm mascarpone
100gm caster sugar
250ml thickened cream
to complete
250ml thickened or double cream
30gm pistachio kernels (blanched if liked, see notes)


  1. Wash and dry 6 good-looking strawberries. Place chocolate in small deep cup in microwave. Heat for 30 seconds at a time, until melted. Dip bottom third of strawberry in chocolate and place on non-stick baking paper on plate in fridge to set.
  2. To prepare strawberry purée, wash and hull remaining strawberries. Purée strawberries with raspberries using stick blender with sugar and vanilla until smooth.
  3. Slice sponge horizontally into 1cm thick slices. Using round cutter, the same diameter as chosen glasses, punch out 12 discs. Set aside.
  4. Make mascarpone custard. Whisk yolks, cornflour, plain flour, vanilla and 50ml milk in large bowl, until smooth.
  5. Heat 250ml milk and mascarpone together in saucepan with sugar until simmering, stirring occasionally. Whisk hot liquid in steady stream onto egg mixture. Immediately pour back into warm pan and place on low heat for a few minutes, until custard is thick. Whisk to remove any lumps that form. Pour into bowl and refrigerate until cold.
  6. Whisk cream until it is firm and fold into cooled custard a little at a time. Use a whisk to stir to ensure a smooth result.
  7. To construct trifles, spoon about one tablespoon custard into base of chosen serving glasses. Sprinkle with a little white chocolate. Top with about one tablespoon puree.
  8. Brush 6 sponge discs with Cointreau and press one on top of puree layer.
  9. Repeat custard, chocolate and puree layers. Top with final pieces of sponge brushed with Cointreau.
  10. To complete, whisk cream until stiff peak stage. Fill piping bag fitted with # 11 star nozzle. Pipe rosettes on top of trifles to cover.
  11. Place frosted strawberry on top of each glass and sprinkle with roughly chopped, blanched (see notes) pistachios.
  12. Cover and refrigerate until serving.

cooks notes:

  • Wash strawberries with hulls intact to keep from becoming waterlogged.
  • Frosted strawberries are best made on the day of serving, but can be made 24 hours in advance, left to dry then covered and refrigerated.
  • Dip (dry) strawberries into melted white chocolate instead of frosting with sugar.
  • Trifles can be made up to a couple of days in advance, but are best if made the night before serving, this gives them 12 to 24 hours to settle.
  • Add whole blueberries and/or raspberries to the strawberry puree for a variation.
  • Try Drambuie, Muscat or sweet sherry as an alternative choice to flavour sponge.
  • If pistachios still have skins, blanch for 1 minute in boiling water. Drain and run under cold water to cool. Rub nuts in clean tea towel to remove skins. Roughly chop and use as per recipe. The flavour and colour will be improved. This is optional and only if time permits.

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Meet the team

Tracey Cotterell

Tracey Cotterell
Tracey Cotterell


Tracey has been in the food industry since completing her Diploma in Hotel, Catering and Institutional Management in 1982 in the UK. She worked for an outside catering company in London, then joined her parents in rural West Sussex running

View Tracey’s full profile.

Tracey Cotterell

Tracey Cotterell


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