It’s the most wonderful time of the year! And what better way to celebrate than with our first Christmas Recipe Advent Countdown! 7 days to go…
Our fourth Christmas countdown recipe – Vissino and Mastiha Trifle!
This trifle is a celebration of cherries, sweet and sour. Select an ornate glass or crystal bowl with a stand for this spectacular trifle.
The layers are lovely, with contrasting colours and textures that you want to show off.
Today I present on GCT, how to make the most delicious Vissino and Mastiha Trifle.
*Tip: Start this recipe a day ahead.
Vissino and Mastiha Trifle Recipe
- 15 gold-strength gelatine leaves
- 11⁄2 cups sour cherry syrup 5 cups water
- 1 × 670 g jar sweet pitted cherries (11⁄2 cups of the liquid reserved)
- 3 pellets Masticha Chios (available from Sweet Greek)
- 1 tsp sugar
- 500mL milk
- 40g cornflour
- 5 egg yolks
- 125g caster sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 L pouring cream
- 1⁄2 cup caster sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 packets small swiss rolls
- 1 cup sweet sherry
- 1⁄2 cup framboise, raspberry syrup
- 400g sliced tinned peaches, strained
- (1⁄4 cup of juice reserved)
- 3 tbsp Amarena cherries in syrup
- 1 packet petite pink round macarons, such as Fossier circles
- freeze-dried raspberries
- 1⁄2 cup flaked almonds, toasted
- To make the jelly, soak the gelatine leaves in a bowl of cold water. Put the reserved sweet pitted cherry liquid in a saucepan. Add the sour cherry syrup and the water,
and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat.
- Squeeze as much liquid as possible from the gelatine leaves and add them to the hot liquid. Whisk lightly to incorporate and dissolve the gelatine. Strain through a fine sieve into a large rectangular glass or ceramic dish. Add the sweet pitted cherries and refrigerate overnight.
- The next day make the custard, starting well ahead of time as it needs to cool. To make the custard, grind the Masticha Chios to a powder in a mortar and pestle with 1 teaspoon of sugar and set aside. Make a paste with 50 millilitres of the milk and the cornflour. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, beat the egg yolks with the sugar and vanilla using the whisk attachment until pale and the sugar has dissolved. Add the cornflour paste and beat thoroughly.
- Heat the milk with the ground Masticha Chios until little bubbles start to appear. Remove from the heat. With the machine running, immediately pour this mixture, in a very slow stream, into the egg mixture. Once the mixture is fully combined, strain the custard through a fine strainer into a clean saucepan and return to a low to medium heat.
- Whisk continuously to form a beautiful, velvety custard. Remove from the heat and pour into a clean bowl.
- Cover directly with cling wrap or baking paper to prevent a skin forming, and refrigerate until ready to use.
- To assemble, cut the jelly into rough cubes and set aside. Whip the pouring cream with the caster sugar and vanilla until soft peaks form, then set aside. Cut each swiss roll into 3-centimetre slices, and arrange them in the bottom of the serving bowl. Ensure some come slightly up the sides so the jam swirls are visible. Drizzle the sweet sherry, framboise and the reserved peach juice over the swiss rolls.
- Place the sliced peaches in a nice even layer over the swiss rolls, top with the Amarena cherries, then pile the jelly on top, making sure it comes right to the edges of the bowl.
- Pour the slightly warm custard over the jelly and wiggle the bowl so the jelly settles into the gaps. Refrigerate immediately.
- When ready to serve, spread the whipped cream over the top, ensuring it covers the whole surface. Place the beautiful little pink macarons around the edge of the trifle.
- Sprinkle the freeze-dried raspberries and flaked almonds over the top.
Kathy Tsaples, living her ‘Sweet Greek’ dream
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