Free-form berry trifles with lemon syllabub

Recipe: Free-form berry trifles with lemon syllabub


  • 2 lemons
  • 100ml sweet white wine (a dessert wine such as botrytis semillon)
  • 2 1/2 tbs caster sugar
  • 150ml thick cream
  • 4 slices (about 1.5cm-thick) sponge cake 200g lemon curd
  • 150g blueberries
  • Vanilla custard
  • 1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped
  • 300ml thin cream
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 40g caster sugar
  • 2 tsp cornflour


  1. Grate the rind of 1 lemon and squeeze the juice from half of it. Mix with half the wine and 1/2 tablespoon of the sugar in a bowl. Cover and leave overnight. The next day, whip the cream until thick. Strain the lemon mixture, then slowly fold into the cream. Cover and refrigerate the syllabub until required.
  2. To make the vanilla custard, place vanilla pod and seeds in a saucepan with cream, heat to scalding point, then remove from heat. Place egg yolks, sugar and cornflour in a bowl, and beat with a whisk until combined. Remove the vanilla pod from cream, then pour the cream over the egg mixture. Beat together, return to the saucepan and cook, stirring, over low heat until thickened. Don’t boil. Pour into a jug, cover with plastic wrap to prevent a skin forming, and cool. Keep refrigerated until required.
  3. To make the candied lemon zest for garnish, use a zester to form long, fine strips of peel from remaining lemon. Place remaining sugar in a saucepan with 1/2 cup water and stir over low heat until sugar dissolves. Add the strips of lemon, cook for 5 minutes or until the lemon is sticky and caramelised. Allow to cool.
  4. To serve, divide custard between plates. Place a slice of sponge on the custard, drizzle with remaining wine and place a spoonful of curd on top. Finish with a dollop of syllabub, some blueberries and candied lemon zest.

Number of servings (yield): 4

Meal type: dessert

Culinary tradition: USA (General)

My rating: 4 stars:  ★★★★☆ 1 review(s)