Italian trifle

Any lunch or dinner party which respects the need for ‘completeness’, and which is thus fully able to engage its guests, must include the ‘cherry on the cake’, ie the perfect dessert to break the hearts (and seduce the palate) of everyone eating, and bringing satisfaction and happiness to those who have laboured hard in the kitchen to prepare it. Depending on your point of view, a lovely Italian trifle made with great care with top quality ingredients, might just be the best way to add just that touch of elegance to your dinner party, possibly reaching the peak of culinary satisfaction in the course of sharing good food amongst friends. Thanks to our chef’s advice, now you make your own impeccable Italian trifle - start with our recipe for sponge cake, then move on to the one for Italian custard. Are you ready to be a skilled confectioner?


240 minutes Total time
120 minutes Active time
Serves 6 persons
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Prepare two sponge cakes and cut each one into three layers. Make some custard from 3 egg yolks. On a baking pan place the first layer of sponge cake and brush with the alchermes liqueur. Then spread on a layer of custard and sprinkle with candied fruit. Continue layering the sponges, alternating one soaked with rum with another soaked in alchermes. Continue layering until the last one which you do not cover with custard. Now take a knife and cut the sides of the sponge so that it resembles a dome. Beat the egg whites with the sugar and, with a pastry bag, use this mixture to decorate the outside of the trifle. Bake at 110°C until the decorative sugar mixture has hardened into a meringue. Serve only when very cold.

As an alternative you can make your Italian trifle using other liqueurs such as Marsala or even Rosolio.
The name ‘alchermes’ derives from Arabic and in this language the expression means "cochineal".

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