Partly due to Alex's advice (see yesterday's comments) and partly due to laziness, I ended up ordering myself a lamp from Amazon.ca. This means I will not have to do without a reading lamp for a while when the old one is being repaired. I suppose I could have shone a flashlight on my book but....
Then went shopping this afternoon (Tues) and bought a few extras, not many, for birthday meal on Saturday (him, not me) and it all came to $158 so I had $50 in points so only $108. I love this system of points. I earned another 9,000 odd today too. $9.
I received an unexpected phone call from my cousin who lives in the San Francisco area. His wife, whom I have never met, apparently reads this blog and when my cousin was looking for an English Sherry Trifle recipe for his regimental reunion, he came to me. He said as far as he remembered there were certain ingredients and he listed canned fruit - canned fruit??? No no no. This is the recipe I sent him. One thing you really need for trifle is English (or at least European) cream which is thick and rich and to which North American cream cannot hold a candle. But.... It says strictly for grown ups, but actually doesn't include much sherry. Personally I would put a good slurp more than 6 Tbs. You can also sub brandy or champagne. Also, you can sub any fruit you want, but not canned please. I must admit most people would use Bird's Custard though. I did suggest my cousin could fly back to the UK (he used to go a lot at one time) and get some real cream.
Traditional English Sherry Trifle - Strictly for the Grown Ups!
8 single trifle sponge cakes or 8 -12 ounces stale sponge cakes
4 Tbs raspberry jam
6 Tbs sweet sherry
12 oz frozen raspberries, partially thawed or 12 ounces fresh raspberries
4 oz ratafia biscuits or 4 ounces amaretti or 4 ounces macaroons
1 pint milk
1 vanilla pod
4 egg yolks
1 Tbs caster sugar, plus a little
caster sugar, for sprinkling
1 1/2 tablespoons cornflour
3/4 pint whipping cream
2 oz sliced almonds, toasted
glace cherries or fresh raspberry, to decorate
silver dragees, to decorate
1. Split the sponges in half then spread each half thinly with raspberry jam.
2. Sandwich each half back together and cut into quarters.
3. Place in the base of three and a half pint (2 litre) glass trifle bowl.
4. Sprinkle the sherry over the sponges and spoon over the partially thawed raspberries and their juice.
5. Roughly crush the ratafia biscuits and sprinkle over the raspberries.
6. Chill for 3-4 hours.
7. Place the milk and vanilla pod in a small pan and slowly bring to just below boiling point.
8. Transfer to a heatproof jug and leave to infuse for 10 minutes.
9. Remove the vanilla pod from the milk.
10. Place the egg yolks, cornflour and sugar in a bowl and whisk together.
11. Whisk in the milk, then strain the liquid back into the rinsed pan through a fine sieve.
12. Cook over a gentle heat , stirring constantly until the custard starts to thicken, being careful not to allow to boil.
13. Cook gently for two minutes unit the custard is a thick pouring consistency.
14. Quickly pour the custard into a cold bowl to prevent further cooking.
15. Sprinkle the surface with a thin coating of caster sugar to prevent a skin forming.
16. Set aside and leave to cool.
17. Spoon the cold custard onto the raspberries in the trifle bowl, spreading to the edges with a palette knife.
18. Gently whip the cream until it nearly holds its shape, then spoon three quarters of it on top of the custard and carefully spread to the sides of the bowl.
19. Whip the remaining cream until it holds its shape.
20. Pipe swirls of cream around the top of the bowl and decorate with flaked almonds and cherries, silver dragees or raspberries.
Have a great day