So it’s 4th of July week and probably the biggest BBQ holiday of the year. For me there is always the challenge of finding a dessert that I can eat, but that is yummy and travels easily. It also happens that fresh berries end up being on sale the week of Independence Day. So this week I made my favorite dessert to take to parties, a berry trifle.
With all of my food allergies I have always loved angel food cake. It is almost always dairy free and easy to find at grocery stores. Add some fruit and maybe some sorbet or vanilla rice dream and you have an easy strawberry shortcake. With the addition of blueberries you have a very patriotic version. Several years ago I was given a trifle bowl, which makes this dessert look stunning when made for a large group. So here is my all store-bought recipe for an easy fourth of July fruit and cake trifle:
1 2lb package of fresh strawberries
2 pints of fresh blueberries
2 packages (24 count or so) lady fingers
2 tubs (14 oz) strawberry pie glaze (often found in the produce department)
1 32oz container of marshmallow cream
I start by washing the fruit and I set aside a few pretty strawberries and a handful of blueberries for the topping. I then chop the strawberries into small pieces. And then I’m ready to start layering in the trifle bowl. The bottom layer is lady fingers, trying to cover the bottom of the bowl as completely and evenly as possible. This is followed with a layer of strawberries with pie glaze on top, then a layer of marshmallow cream. Here you can repeat the layers if you are making a strawberry only trifle. For the holiday I added a couple layers of blueberries into the mix for the color. Continue layering the ingredients being sure to end the top layer with a generous amount of cream. I then use the reserved whole berries, blueberries and a few lady fingers to decorate the top. This whole dessert can be made in about 15 minutes and all of the ingredients may be store bought making this a very simple dessert.
I have made many different versions of this dessert, and I am sure there are tons of substitutions or variations that would also be delicious. I have used kiwis, blueberries, strawberries and peaches for the fruit layers. For the lady fingers, one could use any pre-made angel food cake or even a chocolate angel food if desired. I have also made this with a vanilla pound cake (when I can find a dairy free version at the store or I can make it myself). As for the marshmallow cream, it is a little sweet for some tastes but it is a good dairy free option (if a little hard to spread into even layers). There are plenty of dairy free whipped topping recipes that use full fat coconut milk and the slight coconut flavor is good with the strawberries. There is also soy whipped topping at some stores but I have not tried it. Of course you could make this with normal whipped cream if dairy is not a concern. These are just the variations I have tried. Have fun experimenting with this one, and happy July 4th!!