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  • Writer's pictureMarissa Bialecki

Rhubarb Trifle Cakes | Capital Chefs: Mallory Staley of 1789 (Part 2)

Updated: Dec 25, 2018

One of the things Mallory and I both geeked out over when we spoke was the fact that the arrival of Spring means a ton of fresh fruit to cook with. Right now, rhubarb is coming into season and her recipe for rhubarb shortcake trifles is fantastic.


For a long time I had no idea what a trifle was–an easy to assemble dessert that has layers of fruit, cake and custard. It’s a dessert you can either dress up or dress it down, depending on the occassion and how fancy you want to get. Don’t be intimidated by the fact that you have to prepare three separate parts to make the whole dessert. Serve this up in a clear glass bowl and let all your friends marvel over your impressive handiwork.


Rhubarb Shortcake trifles

Serves 4-6


Shortcake Ingredients and Instructions: 2 ½ cups all purpose flour 1 ½ tablespoons baking powder 1 teaspoon salt ½ cup brown sugar 1 ½ sticks (6oz) butter 1 ½ cups + 2 tablespoons heavy cream

Place the dry’s ingredients in a bowl and using the paddle attachment of a mixer or a fork, mix in the butter until it looks like small peas. Add in 1 ½ cups cream and mix until a dough is formed. Roll out on a floured surface and cut into rounds (author’s note: that means circles, for my non-cooks). Brush with the remaining cream and sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 325 degrees until golden brown, about 12 to 18 minutes.


Rhubarb compote: 2 cups chopped rhubarb 1 cup granulated sugar

Place into a pot and cook down until tender, cool.


Pastry cream: 1 cup whole milk 2/3 cup granulated sugar 3 egg yolks 1 table spoon vanilla extract 2 tablespoon cornstarch ½ stick (2 tablespoons) softened butter


Place the milk in a pot. Bring to a boil and add the vanilla. Whisk together the yolks, cornstarch and sugar in a bowl. Pour a little of the milk mixture into the egg/sugar mixture, whisking quickly. Pour all that back into the pot with the remaining milk. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and whisk in butter. Chill.


To serve: Cut up shortcakes into bite size squares. In a glass dish, layer the compote, shortcakes, and pastry cream. Garnish with whip cream and enjoy!

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