Monday, May 18, 2015

Mother's Day Sugar Cookies and a Recipe for Tropical Trifle

I should have been a housewife

i should have been a housewife

For Mother's Day a couple of years ago I made some really cool monarch butterflies from Hello Cupcake. They were my favorite cupcakes to make by far and I wanted to try and recreate them into a sugar cookie for Mother's Day this year.

I should have been a housewife

I should have been a housewife

I hosted a Mother's Day BBQ for my mother and mother-in-law and decided to make my cousin Jeff's trifle to accompany the cookies for dessert. Every year his trifle is requested at all of the family holidays and it's a perfect springtime dessert with hints of coconut, crushed pineapple, and mandarin oranges. The best part is you can cook the components the night before and assemble it the day-of to make the day even less stressful.

I should have been a housewife

 Jeff's Tropical Trifle
2 cans crushed pineapple, juice reserved
2 cans mandarin oranges
1 box yellow cake mix
1 box vanilla cook and serve pudding, not instant pudding
1 box coconut cook and serve pudding, not instant pudding (can used 2nd box of vanilla if coconut isn't available)
3 cans Goya coconut milk
2 cup shredded coconut, divided
1 cup malibu rum
1 pint heavy cream

Night before/morning of

1. Substituting coconut milk for regular milk, make pudding according to package directions (mix powders from both packets into one pot). While the pudding is cooking make sure to stir the pudding constantly so the bottom of the pot doesn't get scorched. Once pudding has thickened add 1 cup of shredded coconut to pudding and place on counter to cool. To prevent a skin from forming, place plastic wrap directly on the pudding. 

(If making the night before, once the bowl is cool to the touch, place in refrigerator until you're ready to assemble the trifle)

2. Drain the two cans of crushed pineapple, saving the juice, and place solids into a non reactive bowl. Prepare the cake mix replacing the water with an equal amount of pineapple juice and bake on a jelly roll sheet following the box instructions.

3. Drain the mandarin oranges and add the fruit to the bowl of crush pineapple. Add 1 cup Malibu rum and allow to soak into the fruit as long as possible (night before would be best). If there's any left over pineapple juice after the cake is baked, you can add it back into the fruit mixture. Refrigerate mixture if making the night before. 

Day of

4. Assemble trifle by cutting a circle of cake using the trifle bowl as a guide. Build by placing a layer of cake into trifle bowl, topping that with a layer of mixed fruit (approximately half) and drizzling some of the leftover juices onto the cake. Top the fruit with a layer of pudding and repeat until you reach the top of the trifle bowl.

(I actually had enough left over to make one more mini trifle in a canning jar for lunch the next day... Yum!)

5. Top trifle with fresh whipped cream and remaining coconut.