"You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism. "~Erma Bombeck
The 'Trifle' is about as classic of a 4th of July dessert as it gets. And, it just happens to be one of my favorites! Sweet moist cake with seasonal berries and rich whipped cream....
SERIOUSLY, does it get any better than that?!
So here is my grain and dairy free Trifle recipe....and yes, that IS a coconut flour cake! You don't get that very often from me, but I have to say that it's just perfect for a 'Trifle'. It actually reminds me a bit of the french pound cakes that I used to make back in my "wedding cake" making days. This sweet cake is a perfect match for the tart summer berries and creamy coconut cream!
The truth is, sometimes simple ingredients just make for the best flavors! Of course you can always sub your favorite cake recipe here and even dairy whipped cream (if you are a dairy eater), because that's the beauty of trifle....simplicity and versatility!
Summer Berry Trifle W/Vanilla Cake
1/2 cup plus 2 tsp coconut flour, sifted
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
5 whole eggs (2 of them separated)
1/2 cup coconut oil/ghee, softened or liquid
1/2 cup honey
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 1/2-2 cups washed & diced strawberries (cut large if using a traditional Trifle bowl)
1 1/2-2 cups washed blueberries
1 1/2-2 cups washed raspberries
3-4 cans full-fat coconut milk, cream only
Honey or choice of sweetener optional to taste
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Sift the dry ingredients together and set aside.
Note: Be sure to use the 'dip and sweep(scoop)' method when measuring coconut flour. Dip the measuring cup into the flour, then lightly sweep over the top with a knife or flat edge. You don't want to pack the flour. Coconut flour is highly absorbent, so proper measuring is imperative to get a nice cake 'crumb'.
3. Separate 2 of the eggs, setting the whites aside and putting the 2 yolks in a medium sized bowl. Crack open the rest of the eggs, adding them to the bowl with egg yolks.
4. Using a mixer or hand whisk, beat the coconut oil(liquid or solid, doesn't matter), honey, vanilla and lemon juice until they are well combined.
5. On low/medium-speed, mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Continue to mix till the batter is smooth and has no lumps.
6. Add the eggs (not including the 2 egg whites) in three phases to the batter. Allowing each addition to be incorporated completely before adding the next.
7. In a small bowl, beat the egg whites till thick soft peaks form. Fold into the batter.
8. Pour the batter into a greased 8 inch square brownie pan or 7X10 small casserole dish lined with parchment paper, allow a few inches of flaps to hang over the two long sides of the pan. This will help later with removing the cake ensure that the sides of the cake won't stick to the pan. Alternatively, you could make cup cakes with the batter and cube those up for the trifle. Baking times will vary depending on the depth of the cake pan. I find that a 1 or 2 inch high cake produces the best texture instead of a thicker cake. However, I have made this in a standard size bread pan as well, and it turns out very nice.
9. Bake for 30-45 min. or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean. Baking times will vary from oven to oven, bakeware to bakeware and thickness of the cake. So keep an eye on it toward the end. The cake should be a nice golden color.
10. Allow the cake to cool for 5-10 minutes, run a sharp knife along the edges and carefully remove from the pan. Cool completely. Coconut baked goods can taste 'eggy' before they have cooled completely. For best results, allow enough time to cool before cutting and serving. Cut the cake into one inch cubes.
For the coconut whipped cream:
11. Chill 2-3 three cans of full-fat coconut milk (a few hours or overnight).
12. Open the cans and scoop the thick cream in to a medium bowl. Try to keep as much coconut liquid out of the cream as possible. Discard the liquid or freeze it into ice cube trays to use in smoothies.
13. With a hand/standing mixer, beat the cream on high for a minute or so. Add a little honey if desired. A few teaspoons is all you need. Continue beating till well combined. Note: Coconut cream does not really increase in volume the way dairy cream does.
Assembling the Trifle:
14. Assembly is super easy. Just add some cake to the bottom of your dish, then whipped cream, strawberries/raspberries, whipped cream, more cake, blueberries, more whipped cream, then more fruit if desired or cake crumbles. Really just layer it however you like!
This recipe should make enough for 4 individual 12 oz trifles (as pictured) or you can make two cakes, add extra fruit and more coconut cream (2-3 more cans) for one, 2-quart trifle or glass bowl.
I prefer to assemble the trifle just before serving as the coconut cream will become thick and dense in the fridge. If you do make it ahead of time, allow the trifle to to sit out for 5 minutes or so before serving.
Happy 4th of July, Enjoy!