Food=love in my books.
To celebrate HER FOREVER GIFT, my Montana Mavericks’ holiday novella, going FREE on all platforms, I’m sharing a recipe–and excerpt–from the book.
Louise’s trifle isn’t something to be trifled with…and, as you’ll see, your options for fruit is varied, to say the least. Pick what your family likes and run with it, as Louise did.
Recipe Type: dessert
This dessert if light and refreshing and easy to prepare. Plus, you can pick your family’s favorite fruits. Be creative! These are the fruits my family likes best, my heroine, Louise Jenkins, chose other variations. Nuts and dried fruits might be interesting, as well.
- 1 packaged Angel Food cake or 2 packaged sponge cakes, broken into pieces
- 1 package fresh blueberries
- 1 package fresh blackberries
- 4 cups frozen strawberries (fresh are okay, too, but frozen are easier to come by at Christmastime)
- 4 C whipping cream prepared to taste (I like mine not overly sweet with a couple of drops of vanilla)
- 4 Tbsp sugar
- optional: 1/4 C liquor (I use Cointreau for the hint of orange.)
- optional: 1/4 C chocolate syrup
- Wash fruit and drain completely. Reserve 1/4 cup of raspberries for decoration.
- Break cakes into bite-size pieces, set aside.
- Prepare whipping cream to stiff set, sweeten as you desire.
- Slice strawberries and mix with sugar and liquor, as desired.
- Layer cake on the bottom, fresh fruit, strawberry mixture, then whipped cream.
- Arrange reserved raspberries on top, then drizzle with chocolate, if desired.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve. The longer it sits the more the flavors mingle.
“The soup is fabulous, Louise,” her new son-in-law said.
“Really great, Grandma, can I have more?” Chloe asked.
“Of course. Eat up.” Louise stood to reach the ladle. “What about you, Mark?”
The youngest of them shook his head. “No, thanks. I’m leaving room for dessert.”
Everyone’s gaze followed Mark’s to the tall-sided glass bowl that held Louise’s trifle. She’d removed it from the refrigerator moments earlier so it could come to room temperature before serving. Three distinct strata were visible: coarsely torn bits of white cake topped by marinated cherries, blueberries, mandarin orange slices and pineapple, and lastly whipped cream. Each portion would be topped with warm Copper Mountain Chocolate Company’s decadent and nearly immoral dark chocolate syrup.
Mark wasn’t the only one to lick his lips.
“Where’d you learn to make that, Mom?” Bailey asked. “We’ve had it on Christmas Eve for as long as I can remember.”
Louise looked at OC. The intensity of his stare made her blush. “I made it up. Our first Christmas after we were married, we were too poor to make anything fancy and I remembered reading that in olden days, people served stale cake with fruit that they marinated in rum or brandy then poured over the cake to make it palatable. So, that’s what I did.”
OC let out a laugh that made everyone look his way. “First time I ever saw your mother drunk.”
“Mom doesn’t drink.”
“She didn’t have to–every bite was like taking a shot.” OC slapped his knee. “It was funnier than heck. Unlike some people–” He tapped both thumbs to his chest.” –Luly was a happy drunk. But, boy, did she have a headache in the morning.”
Markie sat forward, rubbing his hands together. “Am I going to get drunk eating it?”
Paul elbowed him. “No.”
Paul looked at Louise for confirmation. “That was the last time I used whiskey to make my trifle, Mark. Sorry to disappoint you, but the brandy flavor comes from the little bit of natural fermentation produced by the fruit.” She leaned over and squeezed his thin little arm. “It still tastes yummy and you won’t have a terrible, horrible headache in the morning. Like I did.”
And my husband won’t have fallen off the wagon when he’s been doing so well, she didn’t add.