The Dean’s Trifle

Preparation info
  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in
English Provincial Cooking

By Elisabeth Ayrton

Published 1980

  • About

The Dean of Trinity College, Cambridge, in the late nineteenth century preferred this to any other trifle and insisted that it should appear on the High Table at all college feasts.


  • 8 oblong sponge cakes (bought in a packet)
  • Raspberry jam
  • Apricot jam
  • ¼ lb (


Cut the sponge cakes in half lengthways. Lightly spread 8 halves with raspberry jam and 8 with apricot jam. Arrange them in a very large glass or china bowl, jam sides upwards and piled two or three deep. Crumble the ratafias or macaroons and put them with the sponge cakes. Pour over the sherry and leave to soak for at least 20 minutes.

Whip the cream, sugar and brandy as for a solid sy