Black Cherry & Vodka Trifle

Serves 10. Can be made up to two days ahead (not suitable for freezing).

If you like a very boozy trifle add more vodka! By the way you won’t get much change from a jar of cherry jam, you’ll use nearly all of it.


  • 2 packets trifle sponges (16 sponges)
  • 1 jar black cherry jam
  • 300ml (1/2 pint) double cream
  • 200ml tub half fat creme fraiche
  • 2 x 410g cans pears in natural juice
  • 6 tablespoons vodka
  • 600ml (1 pint) thick pouring custard

For decoration

  • 10 fresh cherries


  1. You will need 3 litre trifle bowl.
  2. Split the trifle sponges horizontally. Spread generously with cherry jam and sandwich together, then cut about half of them diagonally in two. Whip the cream till thick and mix in the creme fraiche.
  3. Pour the vodka into a measuring jug, and make up to 300ml with pear juice from the can. Chop the drained pears into small chunks.
  4. Spread half the pear chunks over the base of the trifle bowl. Arrange half the cherry-filled triangles around the edge of the dish, cut side facing out (keep the other half of the triangles for the next layer).
  5. Fill the inside in, packing the sponges in very tightly. Pour over half the vodka and pear juice.
  6. Put enough cream to give 10 blobs in a small bowl, for decoration later. Spread the remainder over the sponge. Make a second layer of cherry-filled sponges as before, pour over the remaining pear and vodka juice and top with the remaining pears. Spread over the custard and decorate with 10 blobs of the reserved cream, topping each blob with a cherry.