Monday, December 17, 2007

Holiday Triflings

In the midst of the Moving, it's been sort of hard to keep up on the fact that Christmas is fast approaching. My usual Christmas Cookie Baking has gone on hiatus this year due to all that, though one never knows what I might be inspired to do on Christmas eve.

Meanwhile, as we retrieved more car and truckloads of stuff from the old house, it was also in our minds that our Holiday Staff Party was this evening, and so there were Secret Santa gifts to purchase, and the business of participating in the night's potluck buffet...which gave me a chance to pull out one of my favoritest classic Christmas treats: the holiday trifle.

Before even compiling ingredients, the trifle bowl is key. Of course, you can use any old bowl, but nothing shows off the layering like a real trifle bowl. I was blessed years ago with co-workers who knew of my trifle fixation, and they gifted me with such a bowl as a birthday gift.

I'm always happy to trot it out when the occasion arises...and, as it turned out, it was one of the first dishes to be unpacked from the move.

Now, for the ingredients, at least as I chose them this time out.

The nice thing about trifle is you can alter the contents and make something different each time.

If you've found the bowl and want to try your hand, you'll need:

1 pound cake (sliced)
2 packages, instant Vanilla pudding
2 large cans, sliced pears, drained
1 large jar, raspberry jam
2 cans, Reddi Whip whipped cream, extra creamy (it holds up better in this format)
1 small bottle, Harvey's Bristol Cream

Now, at our house, compiling ingredients is all the time it takes to attract some attention about what's going on the kitchen, and Em appeared in her pretty Christmas scarf (recently discovered in the Move)to see what was going on, and if there was any anything for her. Fortunately, I'd bought more pound cake than I needed.

Before you start, you'll want to make the pudding and drain the fruit. And it helps to put the booze in a measuring cup, so you can control the flow a little better than straight out of the bottle.

So, when you are ready to begin(and the dog's been satisfied), you line the bottom of the bowl with cake slices, cutting them to fill in the holes and gaps. Then, lightly pour the booze of choice (Amaretto also works very nicely...) to soak the cake.

With a wooden spoon, spread a layer of jam across the soaking cake. Pour in a layer of pudding. Arrange pear slices in the pudding and then top with whipped cream. Then you start with the cake again and begin building the layers up, until you've reached the top of the bowl. I got three layers into this particular bowl.

Here's the finished product:

Since I was making this an hour or so before we were due at the party, I brought the remaining can of whipped cream along, so I could top things off festively once we'd arrived there, to account for the settling which occurs.

I'm pleased to report it was quite yummy, and very popular on the dessert table. And there was just enough leftover to bring home for a couple nights worth of post-dinner treat!

And the party?!

It was terrific!


Anonymous said...

Hey, nice photo of you and Owen! And what a gorgeous trifle!

Merry Christmas!
Heather (Pence that is)

babs said...

Yum....trifle...Though I think I prefer using something besides Harvey's Bristol Cream. Though honestly, am not sure what Harvey's Bristol Cream tastes like. And does anyone use or drink HBC at other times besides Xmas? I tend to associate with the holidays because of the commercials.

Yes, as far as cooking at my place and pets. When I was making a salad for Thanksgiving, a paw crept over the kitchen island and made an attempt on the red pepper. (Which he did not get). And when I made the blueberry gingerbread, he was terribly interested in the soured milk.

The pictures are very good too. Both of the party and Em.

Yes, burble, burble, burble.