Trifle seemed to be the throw together last-resort dessert. It came to the rescue, saving your dinner party when your original grand masterpiece didn’t quite go to plan. Stale cake was softened with sherry from a bottle that saw daylight only at Christmas, then layered with packet strawberry jelly, a carton of custard and whatever over-ripened fruit was within reach. Mmm … delish.
Forget that stodgey horror.
This trifle starts by making your own super-soft macadamia and yoghurt cake. Drizzled over the cake pieces is a slightly tart fresh lime syrup, which offsets the sweet juicy strips of ripe mango and vanilla cream layered on top. It’s a swoon-worthy summer dessert that’s very easy to throw together, despite the deceivingly lengthy list of ingredients and number of steps: Make cake, chop fruit, boil sugar, whip cream and layer layer layer away.
This recipe is from Bill Granger’s cookbook, Holiday. Packed with recipes to casually throw together on lazy weekends and holidays, it was difficult to choose just one dish to bring to the foodie feast last weekend. But with killer mango cravings at the moment, I couldn’t go past his light and fresh take on the traditional trifle. The first mango of the season is just magical: its sweet cool flesh, the fragrant mango juice dripping down your chin and fingers, stealing the stone to suck the last bits of fruit off it … sigh, such bliss.
Throw out the stale cake and stodge, throw open your kitchen windows and fill your house with the scents of ripe mango, fresh lime zest and spring air.
Macadamia, Fresh Mango and Lime Trifle
160g (1 cup) unsalted macadamia nuts, ground
6 large eggs, separated
220g (1 cup) Caster sugar
185ml (3/4 cup) Plain Yoghurt
125ml (1/2 cup) Grapeseed oil, or other light-flavoured oil (I used Vegetable)
150g Plain flour
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
330g (1 1/2 cups) Caster sugar
125ml (1/2 cup) fresh lime juice (around 3 limes)
300ml Thick Greek Yoghurt
300ml cream, lightly whipped
3 tablespoons icing sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
4 large ripe mangoes
125g unsalted Macadamia nuts, chopped
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Line the base of a deep 22cm square cake tin, or 22 x 32cm baking tray with baking paper and grease the sides.
Beat the egg yolks with 110g of caster sugar until pale yellow and very creamy. Beat in the oil and yoghurt, then fold in the ground macadamias, baking powder, salt and flour with a spatula.
In a clean dry bowl, beat the egg whites with about 1/3 of the remaining caster sugar until soft peaks form (when beating egg whites, start on low speed and gradually increase every couple of minutes until you reach high speed. This strengthens the structure of your egg white meringue). When you get soft peaks, slowly add the remaining sugar and beat until stiff, glossy peaks form.
Gently fold half of the meringue into the cake mixture with a spatula, then fold in the remaining half. Pour the batter into the cake tin and bake for 25 minutes, or until light golden and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin first, then turn onto a wire rack to cool completely. Don’t worry if it shrinks away from the sides of the pan.
Meanwhile, start the lime syrup. Add the sugar, lime juice and water in a medium-sized saucepan and heat until the sugar has completely dissolved. Turn the heat up to high and boil the syrup, then bring down the heat to simmer for 10 minutes. There’s no need to stir at this stage. Some of the water will evaporate and the syrup will thicken. Set aside to cool.
While everything is cooling, peel and slice up the mangoes into strips. Set aside. Beat the cream until lightly whipped. Whisk in the Greek yoghurt, icing sugar and vanilla until all combined.
When the cake is cool, chop it into small 2cm cubes. The number of layers you’ll have depends on the serving dish you choose to present the trifle in. Layer the bottom of the dish or serving bowl with cake cubes.
Drizzle the cake generously with lime syrup and top with mango slices and a layer of vanilla cream. Keep repeating until all the ingredients are used. Sprinkle the top with chopped macadamia nuts to finish.