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Old English Trifle

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Ain’t it a beauty? Don’t you just hate to wanna stick that serving spoon into it 😉  This is probably the best loved of English cold puddings , the trifle has a long and distinguished history, related to the Tipsy Cake.


I use home baked Jam Swiss Roll but you can also use Ladyfinger Sponge/Italian Sponge Fingers


…slice Jam Swiss Roll into 1cm slices and line base and sides of a large glass serving bowl …I love to use a clear, see through glass bowl to show off the lovely spirals of the sponge … looks like a Charlotte Pudding/Cake in the making ya 😉


Sprinkle about ¼ cup of sherry allover the Jam Swiss Roll  … in the background, you can see bowl of strawberry jelly that has just begun to set …


….pour partly set jelly over sponge tools, refrigerate until jelly is set …


Meanwhile, make your custard … you can make from scratch or like me, make it by blending custard powder and sugar with a little of the milk in a pan ….


…stir in remaining milk ….


…stir over heat until custard boils … keep stiring …


…stir until custard thickens …remove from heat, stir in essence …


…cover with cling film and leave aside to cool


Now, start to assemble the layers of your trifle … layer peaches over jelly …


…seen here, in between the peach layers, I added mixed fruits and also mandarin oranges as well because I’m making a super-size glass bowl of it …


…now, pour in the custard …


…top with whipped cream, refrigerate and then just before serving up, decorate with grated chocolate or chocolate rice and fresh fruits/strawberries



100g packet strawberry jelly crystals

300g jam sponge roll

¼ cup sherry

425g can sliced peaches, drained

300ml carton thickened cream, whipped

for the Custard :

2 Tbsp custard powder

2 Tbsp castor sugar

2 cups milk

1 tsp vanilla essence


  • Make jelly according to directions on packet, refrigerate until jelly is just beginning to set
  • Cut sponge roll into 1cm slices, place over base and around side of large glass serving bowl, sprinkle with sherry
  • Pour partly set jelly over sponge roll, refrigerate until jelly is set
  • Meanwhile, make the custard by blending custard powder and sugar with a little of the milk in a pan then stir in remaining milk … stir over heat until custard boils and thickens … remove from heat, stir in essence then cover with cling film … set aside for it to cool
  • Place peaches over jelly (+ any other fruits you may be adding on), spread evenly with custard and top with whipped cream …refrigerate
  • Just before serving up, decorate by grating some chocolate allover the cream top and  with fresh fruits, e.g. strawberries, if desired

Jam Swiss Roll

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I made these Jam Swiss Rolls because we are hosting a dinner party and I was gonna make an Old English Trifle for the dessert … I made 2 portions because I needed enough to line a big glass pudding mould … I must admit I was sooooo tempted to start stuffing me face with these rolls when it was done … extremely tempting 😉


Preheat oven to 200°C … grease and line base & sides of a 26cm x 32cm Swiss Roll pan with paper and grease paper … set aside


You will need 3 eggs, separated  … ½ cup castor sugar; ¾ cup  triple sifted self-raising flour; 2 Tbsp hot milk and ½ cup jam, warmed … you will need extra castor sugar when rolling up the Swiss Roll


Beat egg whites in a small bowl with electric mixer until soft peaks form ….


…gradually add sugar to beaten egg-white, beating until dissolved between additions …then add yolks 1 at a time, beating well until thick and light …


…fold in the triple sifted flour and milk … pour mixture into prepared pan ….


…spread batter out evenly in the pan … brake in hot oven (200°C) about 8 minutes


Meanwhile, place a sheet of paper same size as sponge on bench, sprinkle lightly with some extra castor sugar


When sponge is done, turn immediately onto paper, quickly peel away lining paper …cut off crisp edge from long sides …


…spread sponge evenly with jam …


…commence rolling sponge up fro short side with help of paper …


…lift rolled sponge onto wire rack to cool …


Voila! easy-peasy quick to make Jam Swiss Roll ready to be enjoyed 🙂  … ideal for puddings like English Trifle and  Charlotte Pudding or Cake