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Traditional Sherry Trifle

by ELOISE WALTON [email protected]

Eloise Walton is a graduate from Bristol University with a degree in Archaeology and Geology. She moved to the Algarve in 2005 and came to work for the Resident as a journalist early last year.

The British nation should be proud of its pudding heritage and the fact that ‘they put hairs on your chest’, but sadly, humble desserts like spotted dick and treacle sponge are being cast aside in favour of fancy foreign sweets like Panna Cotta and Tiramisu.

As the days grow shorter and the nights grow colder, now is the time to dig out those forgotten cooking aprons and oven gloves and get into the spirit of making traditional wholesome winter puddings.

Traditional desserts are seen as time consuming and unhealthy, but really there’s nothing easier than cooking a crumble from scratch and even children can get involved in the kitchen.

So why not return to your roots and discover the sumptuous delights of these frugal but fabulous classic puds that will not only warm everyone’s tummies but also put a smile on every face around the table? Guaranteed! Here are a few of Delia Smith’s scrumptious puddings – for more, click on the link on the right of this page.

Traditional sherry trifle

Trifles have been a British institution for several centuries, with some sources dating the earliest known recipes to the 16th century. Trifles are ideal for dinner parties and this recipe is very simple to make.


3 egg yolks

570 ml double cream

25 g caster sugar

1 tsp cornflour

1 sponge cake (Portuguese

supermarkets stock Pão de Ló

which is a good substitute)

4 tbsp raspberry jam

55 ml sherry or Madeira wine

225 g fresh or frozen raspberries

2 small bananas, peeled and sliced thinly


Break the sponge cake in pieces and spread a little raspberry jam on each piece. Then put them into a large glass bowl and sprinkle the raspberries and sherry or Madeira wine evenly over them.

To make the custard, heat 275 ml of the double cream in a small saucepan. Blend the egg yolks, sugar and cornflour together thoroughly in a basin, and when the cream is hot, pour it over the egg mixture, stirring constantly. Now return the custard to the saucepan and stir over a very low heat until thick, then remove it and allow to cool. Slice the bananas and sprinkle over the sponge cakes, before pouring the custard on top. Whip up the remaining 275 ml of cream and spread it over the top. Cover and chill for three or four hours. Extra decorations can also be added before serving, including flaked almonds or grated dark chocolate.

Eloïse Walton can be contacted by emailing [email protected]