Gin and Cherry Christmas Trifle

Gin and Cherry Christmas Trifle

Cooking with gin is back! We’re doing it again, who would have thought? Not us.

We’re getting creative again, but this time it’s the holiday season and what’s more festive that a good old fashioned summer trifle. But this time with a twist, can you guess the twist? It’s not hard to guess we’re making it with gin!

We found this recipe through and you can find the recipe through this link.

However, we made some mistakes while cooking and have done some alterations so you can find our amended version of the recipe below.

What you'll need for the trifle:

  • 1.5kg pitted frozen cherries
  • 500g fresh cherries, halved and pitted
  • 460g caster sugar
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds, toasted, lightly crushed
  • 1 tsp juniper berries, lightly crushed
  • 20g gelatine leaves
  • 250ml gin (for jelly)
  • 2 tbs of gin (for sauce)
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 500ml full-cream milk
  • 500ml thickened cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp ground mixed spice
  • 10 egg yolks
  • ¼ cup cornflour
  • ½ cup hazelnuts
  • 1 cup (320g) lemon curd (store bought)
  • 450g panettone
  • ½ cup (125ml) elderflower cordial
  • 2 cups (500ml) double cream



  1. Place cherries, 200g sugar, coriander seeds, juniper berries and 600ml water in a pan. Bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve sugar, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Soak gelatine in cold water to soften for 10 minutes. Pass cherry mixture through a fine sieve into a large jug, gently pressing cherries to release juice (discard solids). Measure 900ml of liquid for jelly, reserving remaining separately. Squeeze excess water from gelatine, add to hot cherry liquid and stir until dissolved. Stir in 1 cup of gin and the lemon juice. Pour into a 3 litre trifle dish. Chill for 2 hours to set.
  2. To make custard, place milk, thickened cream, vanilla and mixed spice in a heavy-based pan over medium heat and, stirring occasionally, bring to just below boiling point. Remove from heat. In a bowl, whisk egg yolks, cornflour and 110g sugar until thick and pale. Whisking continuously, slowly pour cream mixture into egg mixture. Return mixture to the pan and whisk over medium-low heat for 3 minutes or until thickened. Transfer to a stand mixer and whisk on medium for 15 minutes or until cool. Cover and chill.
  3. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Place hazelnuts, 75g sugar and 1/3 cup (80ml) water in a saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring continuously, for 10-12 minutes until sugar crystallises. Pour onto tray, cool, then roughly chop. Make sure the sugar doesn’t burn, if its begun to crystalise take it off the stove.
  4. Spread curd on one side of each slice of panettone and sandwich slices together curd-side in. Cut each into 6 squares.
  5. Place reserved cherry liquid, extra gin, ¼ cup (60ml) cordial and remaining 1/3 cup (75g) caster sugar in a small saucepan, bring to the boil and cook for 5 minutes or until reduced by half. Place fresh cherries in a bowl, pour hot liquid on top and chill until completely cool.
  6. Beat double cream and remaining cordial in a stand mixer to soft peaks.
  7. To assemble, pour chilled custard over jelly. Scatter panettone over and spoon cherries and syrup on top. Finish with elderflower cream, then scatter with frosted hazelnuts and elderflowers, if using.

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