Christmas Trifle

I have now successfully finished off all of last year’s Christmas cake in this Christmas trifle that I have concocted. It is a trifle packed full of all the flavours I associate with this time of the year and I think it would make a perfect alternative to the Christmas pudding. It’s lighter, fruity yet silky and decadent with hints of spice and exotics through the use of dates, apricots, clementines, vanilla and cinnamon.

christmas trifle

My LAST post also featured leftover Christmas cake in the form of little baked tarts, but this is certainly a way of rejuvenating some ever so slightly past it’s prime cake and bringing it back to life in trifle form. As I also mentioned in my last post, I do think that Christmas pudding or even mincemeat, dare I say it, even crumbled up mince pies would work a treat as the base for these little pots of trifly goodness.

Christmas trifle

There is a hidden layer (above the cake) of those retro classics, the caramel oranges. I did however use a punnet of beautiful and cheap clementines with their waxy green leaves still attached, on offer at the Co-op. Just beware of the caramel. I took it off the heat to photograph it and it hardened almost straight away. Do not take it off the heat until you have cooked the clementines in it briefly, for a couple of minutes at most. I also added in a freshly sliced orange which added a lovely tart edge to the richly spiced caramel. The sauce has been reduced and I will be using it with the leftover syrupy orange, date and dried apricot caramelised compote with yoghurt as my pudding for this week.

christmas trifle

christmas trifle As I have included dates in this trifle I am entering it into One Ingredient hosted by me this month (DATES) and my partner Nazima at Franglais Kitchen.

christmas trifle I am sending it over to Alphabakes whose chosen letter for this month is “X” and seeing as I have used Xmas cake I think that I can include these Xmas Trifles! Alphabakes is hosted by Ros The More Than Occasional Baker and Caroline at Caroline Makes.

christmas trifle This fits in with Cakeboi’s and The Baking Explorer’s  “Treat Petite challenge“.  “Happy Holidays” is the theme for December, so I am sending it over to to him too.

christmas trifle My trifle is also visiting Vanesther at Bangers & Mash Chat whose “Spice Trail” is cinnamon this month.


christmas trifle And finally, I am linking up to Simply Sensational Food’s “Let’s cook Christmas party food”.




Christmas Trifle
Serves 4
A lovely simple idea for a festive pudding.
Write a review
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
30 min
  1. For the trifle:)
  2. 150g Leftover Christmas cake crumbled up,
  3. 4 caramel clementines (see recipe below),
  4. 150ml pot of Ambrosia custard,
  5. 150ml pot of double cream whipped to soft peaks,
  6. Cinnamon to garnish.
  7. For the caramel clementines:)
  8. 100g caster sugar,
  9. 1 vanilla pod with the seeds scraped out,
  10. 1 cinnamon stick,
  11. 1 star anise,
  12. 4 clementines peeled and sliced into thick slices or chunks,
  13. 1 orange peeled and thickly sliced,
  14. 4 dates thinly sliced,
  15. 4 dried apricots thinly sliced.
  1. For the caramel clementines:)
  2. 1. In a heavy bottomed pan place the caster sugar and heat it until the caramel is formed and it reaches a golden brown colour. Do not leave it as it turns from raw to cooked very quickly,
  3. 2. Once the caramel is golden, add in the vanilla pod, star anise and the cinnamon stick as well as the sliced clementines and cook for a couple of minutes, swirling the pan to coat the clementines evenly,
  4. 3. Add in the dates, apricots and the sliced orange and coat them all in the caramel,
  5. 4. Set aside to cool and allow the flavours to infuse together.
  6. For the trifle:)
  7. 1. Place the crumbled Christmas cake into the bottom of 4 tumblers or wine glasses,
  8. 2. Add a layer of the cooled caramel clementines,
  9. 3. Divide the custard evenly between the 4 glasses and place on top of the clementines,
  10. 4. Dollop on the lightly whipped cream and garnish with a sprinkling of ground cinnamon,
  11. 5. Chill until ready to eat.
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  1. Yes, yes, yes! This just sings out Christmas to me – I love it. And particularly those caramel oranges. A perfect entry for December’s Spice Trail. Thank you so much for sharing.

  2. Thank you for entering Treat Petite! Your trifles look divine! Merry Christmas to you!!

  3. This sounds so good, especially those oranges! I’ve got a festive trifle recipe up my sleeve too!

  4. Looks wonderful, and how brilliant that you’ve used up last year’s Christmas cake in your trifle. My Mum has already promised to bring us one of her trifles when the family all come to us for Christmas – it’s very retro and very boozy and I can’t imagine Christmas without it.

  5. Yay! A trifle that I think I would love. Not having grown up with trifle it has been a bit of a struggle whenever faced with it (my hubby’s late Granny thought I loved it!) – jelly soaked stale/dry biscuits, covered in dubious fruit (tinned – ugh) and gloopy lumpy custard. But this really sings with spice and caramel clemmies, and of course homemade cake. Really lush! A great home for leftover Xmas cake. Great recipe x

  6. You can’t have Christmas without some trifle! I’ve done a somewhat lazier version of yours for the GF channel using leftover christmas pudding with baileys infused custard. I’m loving your photos – those oranges are just gorgeous :-)

  7. Lovely – you can’t have Christmas without trifle!  I usually freeze some raspberries when they are in season for my trifle but either forgot this year or have eaten them!!  This might be the answer instead!

  8. What a lovely seasonal take on trifle! They look very pretty and I bet the caramel orange is delicious. x

  9. Lovely trifles. I can dig in now,why wait for x-mas?

  10. what gorgeous flavours here – i am a sucker for anything in pretty glasses like this and this makes such a lovely dessert. yum!

  11. wow these are definitely very Christmassy and a perfect way to use up leftover christmas cake. Thanks for entering AlphaBakes. 


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