Turn this classic dessert into your signature dish by using your leftovers

Most people enjoy trifle as a delightful dessert during festive occasions, such as holidays, birthdays, or celebratory gatherings, adding a touch of indulgence and sweetness to special moments.

What is Trifle?

Trifle is a classic British dessert that delights taste buds with its layers of indulgent flavours and textures. It typically consists of sponge cake or ladyfingers soaked in sherry or fruit juice, followed by a layer of fruit, such as berries, peaches, or bananas. Custard is then poured over the fruit, adding a creamy and velvety element. Another layer of cake or biscuits may be added, and the dessert is often topped with whipped cream and garnished with fresh fruits or nuts. Trifle offers a delightful combination of sweetness, moistness, creaminess, and fruity tang, making it a beloved treat for any occasion.

What is the Harrowsmith version of Trifle?

This creative, free-form dessert calls for mostly leftovers with a few fresh ingredients. Use whatever leftovers you have on hand and if you’re at your sweets consumption capacity, simply freeze any remaining ingredients (cake, cookies, chocolate, fruits) to use later for a dessert in a pinch!

Make individual servings, or double the recipe to serve a family-style trifle. Serves 4


  • 1/2 cup fruits, fresh or cooked, such as cranberry sauce
  • 3 cups leftover cake (frosted or unfrosted), broken up into
  • 2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup vanilla custard, pudding or pastry cream
  • 1/2 cup leftover crushed cookies
  • Sweetened freshly whipped cream
  • 1/4 cup each chocolate, fudge, toffee pieces (optional)


  1. In four clear vessels such as glasses or jars, divide half of your fruits and layer evenly in the bottom of each.
  2. Next, sprinkle cake pieces overtop, pressing down slightly.
  3. Spread about 2 to 3 tablespoons of custard overtop, and then layer on some crushed cookies, followed by the remaining 1/4 cup of fruits.
  4. Sprinkle an extra layer of cake overtop if you have enough,
  5. top with whipped cream.
  6. Garnish with crushed cookies, chocolate, fudge or toffee, if desired,
  7. Serve.

Be as creative as you like with this free-form dish!

Joanna Notkin
Joanna Notkin

Joanna Notkin is a designer at heart, and food is her passion. With an eye for detail and a love of all things seasonal and local, Joanna approaches food in a way that is delicate and thoughtful. She brings together the flavours of each ingredient while honouring the fact that we truly eat with our eyes.

By The Same Author:

Posted on Wednesday, December 7th, 2022
Tagged: Triffle

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