Christmas Eve Trifles

 - by Brittny

I’m way behind on my blogging, but I figured I’d jump back in by sharing my Christmas Eve culinary adventure.

We started our celebrations with Eric’s brother Mike’s family on Christmas Eve. I was in charge of making a dessert for the meal and I decided to make trifle. I should note that Mike’s wife Marianela is an *incredible* chef, so I’m always a little bit daunted when bringing a dish to her house. However, trifle was going to be a slam dunk. It’s my favorite Christmas food (my mom is originally from England and trifle is a traditional British dessert so we make it every year) so I was excited to be able to make it for my in-laws. It’s super easy and I’ve successfully made it on my own every year since we’ve been married and with my mom every year for as long as I can remember.

If you’ve never had trifle before it’s a pretty simple dessert. You take pound cake and cut it into small cubes and put it at the bottom of a dish, add some fruit and then pour liquid jello over it. Put it in the fridge to let it set. Then make instant pudding and pour that in a nice layer on top of the jello, let that set. Top it off with whipped cream (we always make the whipped cream from scratch because it’s much better that way). Our favorite one to do for Christmas is to make it with raspberry jello (with frozen raspberries in the jello) and pistachio pudding. It looks really nice and Christmas-y all put together because you have red and green and white, and it’s really yummy.

This isn’t exactly how my trifles usually look, but it’s the closest picture I could find

Eric told me that there could be as many as 30 people at dinner and I had no idea how that translated into how many trifles I’d need to make. I decided to play it safe and made 7 (yeah, even for 30 people I went way over board, but I like trifle and I didn’t want to run out). I also wanted to make sure I had plenty of time for all the layers to set up properly so I made sure that I woke up early in the morning to get them started.

Unfortunately, my jello would not set. I had my trifles in the fridge by 10am with the jello waiting to set up and by 3:30pm the jello still wasn’t set (I even used the quick set method which was only supposed to take 30 – 90 minutes to set up). In desperation I cleared out space in our freezer and tried to get them to freeze set up. It sorta worked, at least enough to pour the pudding into them (luckily pudding sets up much faster). Unfortunately the jello still wasn’t super set so all the layers got mixed together. I was pretty upset since I’d spent all day on them and they didn’t turn out right. Luckily they still tasted good. Of course, the 30 people we thought were going to be there, was actually more like 15… and most of those were under the age of 12. So we still have about 5 trifles in our fridge… although it’s probably time to get rid of them now.

In case you were wondering, what I think happened was that I added too much water. Not more than the directions call for, but since I added frozen raspberries in with the jello, I’m guessing that the raspberries melted, adding extra liquid which kept the jello from setting up. Oh well, lesson learned for next time!

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