This is a glorious dessert for a holiday feast, lush with fresh flavors. My family always has trifle at Christmas, but in recent years, I’ve begun making it for Easter, too. Better still, it is easy to prepare. Just be sure to make it a day ahead so it has time to set up in the refrigerator. You can use your own favorite homemade pound cake, or keep it simple and use a ready-made pound cake (for example, two Sara Lee frozen pound cake, which weigh 12 ounces). Also, feel free to use almost any berry here, or a mix of several varieties. You cannot go wrong!
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup packed fresh mint leaves
1 cup seedless raspberry jam or preserves
4 cups sliced, hulled fresh strawberries
2 cups heavy cream
1-1/2 pounds favorite pound cake, sliced 3/4-inch thick
Optional: additional mint leaves for garnish
In a small saucepan, bring 1/2 cup sugar, 1/4 cup water, lemon juice and mint leaves to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar, 1 to 2 minutes. Let cool, then remove mint leaves with slotted spoon.
In a small bowl, combine jam with 3 cups strawberries, mashing slightly. In a large bowl, whip cream and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar to stiff peaks.
Generously brush both sides of cake slices with lemon-mint syrup, then cut into 3/4-inch cubes.
Fit 1/3 of the cubes in the bottom of a 4-quart trifle dish or other glass bowl. Top with 1/3 of berry mixture, and then 1/3 of whipped cream. Repeat to make two more layers; garnish with remaining sliced strawberries. Refrigerate until ready to serve, up to 24 hours. If desired, garnish with additional mint leaves. Makes 8-10 servings.