If your summer is anything like ours, there are a lot of pot luck gathering going on. When it comes to pot lucks, I tend to be in charge of the munchies (appetizers) and the desserts.
One of my desserts that gets a lot of requests are the Trifles. Trifles are beautiful. However; if you are trying to feed a large group – 20 or more – a simple trifle won’t go far enough. I thought about making two trifles, but that would mean having two trifle dishes. Not everyone has one dish, and very few have two. Maybe if I were running a catering business, it would make sense. Who knows, maybe one of these days I’ll find a second trifle dish I just can’t live without. Lord knows, I’ve got more than one of everything else.
Some people think I’m obsessed with kitchen stuff. Maybe. I’ve been collecting stuff since I was ten. I like to think of it as a love of cooking and a deep desire to share. So naturally you need a lot of stuff. If I wanted to, I could have a sit-down dinner for 90 people. Haven’t a clue where they’d all sit, but I’ve got enough plates, glasses and flatware to serve 90. Granted, it won’t all match, but that’s okay.
Anyhow, with all these requests for a trifle dessert, I decided to take my most popular trifle and adapt it to a large casserole dish. Wow – easy to transport, nice to look at and plenty to go around. Winning summertime recipe with out a doubt.
French Vanilla Berry Trifle Casserole
3 (3 oz) boxes Instant French Vanilla Pudding
5 cups cold Milk
2 cups Blueberries
4 cups sliced Strawberries
1/2 cup Sugar, divided
2 cups Heavy Cream
2 teaspoons Vanilla
1 loaf Angel Food Cake
To make the pudding layer, empty the contents of the pudding packages into a mixing bowl. Add cold milk, whisk by hand to blend. Continue to whisk until thick and set. Refrigerated until ready to assemble.
Rinse the blueberries and place in a non-reactive bowl. Slice the strawberries, place in another bowl, sprinkle strawberries with a 1/4 cup of sugar. Set aside for 30 minutes strawberries to release their juices.
When ready to assemble, add blueberries to the strawberries, toss together.
In a medium mixing bowl, whip the cream, vanilla extract, and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar until firm peaks form. Set aside.
To make the layers, slice Angel Food Cake into 1/2-inch cubes. Arrange sliced cake on the bottom of a large glass casserole dish Top with about half of the berries along with their juices. Spread fruit over the cake to cover evenly. Spoon the pudding over the fruit. Spread whipped cream over the pudding. Top cream with remaining berries.
Cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for several hours before serving.
Happy Summer everyone!
On a separate note, once upon a time today was the Feast Day of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ. The feast was first celebrated in Spain in the 16th Century. Eventually the feast was added to the Universal Calendar, assigned to the first Friday after the fourth Sunday of Lent. Yeah, confusing. In 1933, Pope Pius XI raised the feast in ranking, and it was celebrated on the first Sunday in July. However; the feast was moved again, assigned the date of July 1 to reduce the number of feasts fixed to Sundays. Oh but changes were made yet again, and in 1969, the Feast of the Most Precious Blood was removed completely from the Roman Calendar. The church reasoned that the Most Precious Blood of Christ the Redeemer is already venerated in the solemnities of the Passion, of Corpus Christi, of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and in the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. So while the feast day no longer exists on the Universal Calendar of the Roman Catholic Church, it continues to be celebrated in communities that adhere to the Tridentine Mass, the traditional Latin Mass and all its rituals.
My personal feeling is that whatever brings you closer to God is good. Have a blessed day!