Sunday, October 10, 2010

harvest trifle

i know i have previously mentioned
i lived in england,
for a time
and while there
one of my favorite pastimes 
dissing the food
here is my confession
while  in england
i ate some really good food 
food that i find myself trying to duplicate
and sometimes craving
(jacket potato with baked beans anyone?)

one thing that is indisputable
if you don't count fruit cake
the brits know their sweets
i looked forward to "pud" every night

my harvest trifle 
is a twist on the traditional 
to reflect the colors and flavors 
of fall
Harvest Trifle
(printable recipe)
1 pound cake (batter dyed orange--optional)
1 recipe vanilla custard (recipe follows)
1 recipe chocolate ganache (recipe follows)
1/2 cup orange marmalade
1 Tbs Contreau liqueur
whipped cream
shaved chocolate for decorating.
cut the pound cake into large chunks, and set on a sheet pan, allowing to stale a bit. warm the marmalade and then add to it the contreau (you can use a bit more than 1 Tbs if you like). in a trifle dish, or other serving piece, layer 1/2 the cake, 1/2 the custard, drizzles of marmalade, 1/2 the whipped cream and drizzles of chocolate.  repeat, ending with the whipped cream and topping with shaved chocolate.  The key is not to layer like a cake, you really do a layer of cake then, dollops of the other items, then the layer of cake pieces and dollops of the others.  think about each bite and what mix you want to have. the chocolate and marmalade are strong flavors, so you want to use a bit more sparingly.  
to make the custard
3 cups milk
1/2 cup sugar
pinch salt
4  large egg yolks
3 Tbs cornstarch
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbs butter
heat the milk, sugar and salt in a saucepan, over low heat. meanwhile, whisk together the egg yolks and cornstarch.  when the milk is at a simmer, slowly pour into the eggs, while whisking the eggs constantly.  pour the whole mixture back into the saucepan and cook over low heat until it thickens.  do not let it boil, but make sure it just begins to bubble before you pull it from the heat.  pour into a clean bowl and add butter and vanilla.  cover with plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding, and refrigerate until cold
for the ganache
heat 1 cup cream to a simmer, add 1 1/2 cups chopped bittersweet chocolate. stir to combine. use while warm, but not hot.  you can use the leftover over ice cream, or roll into truffles.

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