The food snob in me is in full swing this time of year. I’m scouring my cookbooks, internet, magazines and recipe boxes for new food recipes worthy of the holiday dinner table. I just want something extra special that will be a show-stopper!
I think all cooks and bakers (home cooks and professionals alike) step it up a notch this time of year. It’s a hunt that begins early in the season and one I don’t take lightly, in thought or in calories — I mean it is the holidays after all and we’ll just have to go for a few extra walks to feel a little less guilty about consuming some of these goodies that come around just once a year.
So this week’s recipe is going to come from scratch and take a little more effort than most. But, again, it’s the holidays and there’s something magical about them in so many different ways, so to me, a little more effort is necessary and fun and you and those enjoying your dessert will be so satisfied and pleased with that extra effort.
Perhaps this is the recipe that is going to start a whole new tradition in my house and yours, too. So let’s get started on this delightful gingerbread trifle. Wait until you smell how scrumptious your kitchen smells while baking the homemade gingerbread. I can hardly wait to get started!
Better Homes and Garden December 2011
White Chocolate Gingerbread Trifle
Makes: 10 to 12 servings
2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup molasses
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x9x2-inch square pan, then line bottom of pan with parchment paper (Note: I had no parchment paper, so I greased the pan well and skipped this part - you have to tear the cake anyhow, so you can skip the parchment if you don’t have it). In a medium bowl sift together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, and salt; set aside.
In a small saucepan heat the molasses, water, butter, and brown sugar until hot, stirring until butter and brown sugar are melted. In a large bowl whisk the 2 eggs until blended. Slowly whisk in the molasses mixture. Stir in flour mixture. Pour batter in prepared pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until a skewer inserted near center comes out clean. Cool gingerbread in pan. Remove from pan. Tear two-thirds of the cake into pieces (about 7 cups). Set aside until ready to assemble trifle.
Lemon-White Chocolate Cream
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 ounces white chocolate, chopped
1 cup whipping cream
In a bowl whisk together egg yolks, whole eggs, sugar, and lemon juice. Transfer to a heavy medium-size saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until thickened. If mixture becomes lumpy, whisk until smooth. Remove from heat. Whisk in white chocolate until smooth. Strain into a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap directly on surface. Refrigerate until cold.
In a large mixing bowl beat whipping cream until soft peaks form. Remove, cover, and chill 1/2 cup of the whipped cream to use as topping. Fold remaining whipped cream into cold Lemon-White Chocolate Cream; refrigerated until ready to assemble trifle.
1 12 ounce bag cranberries
1/2 cup water
1/3 - 1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups sliced strawberries
2 tablespoons slivered candied ginger
In a medium saucepan combine cranberries, water, and sugar. Cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until cranberries are soft. Cool completely. Stir in strawberries.
Assembling the Trifle:
In a 7- to 9-inch trifle bowl or other container, spoon in half the Lemon-White Chocolate Cream. Top with pieces of Homemade Gingerbread. Spoon remaining Lemon-White Chocolate Cream on gingerbread layer. Top with Cranberry Compote. Top with the 1/2 cup reserved whipped cream and slivered candied ginger.