stone fruit banana trifle with orange blossom custard

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

No reviews


For the orange blossom custard:
2 1/2 cups cold whole milk (567 g)
1/3 cup sugar (72 g)
1/4 teaspoon salt (1.5 g)
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoon cornstarch (59 g)
3 eggs (150 g) + 2 yolks (30 g)
an instant-read thermometer
1 1/2 teaspoons orange blossom water (8 g), or to taste
2 tablespoons butter (28 grams)

For the macerated stone fruit:
8 cups ripe stone fruit cut into bite-sized pieces (nectarines, peaches, cherries, apricots, plums, etc.)*
3 tablespoons sugar
1 pinch salt

For the whipped cream:
1 pint cold heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon orange blossom water
1 pinch salt

To assemble the trifle:
1 big glass bowl or trifle dish (4-quart container)
macerated stone fruit, strained and liquid discarded (above)
4 bananas, sliced (they should be yellow with a few small brown flecks)
orange blossom custard (above)
orange blossom whipped cream (above)
7 to 10 ounces amaretti cookies (or Nilla Wafers or lady fingers—any dry cookies)
2 stone fruits sliced into pieces for the top


  1. Make the pudding: Whisk together the milk, sugar, salt, and cornstarch (no eggs yet!) in a medium saucepan off the heat. Turn the heat to medium or medium-high, and stir constantly as you bring it to a simmer. As soon as it comes to a simmer, it will thicken noticeably. Simmer and stir for another 30 seconds to 1 minute to fully thicken, then remove from heat.
  2. Immediately temper the eggs: Beat the eggs and yolks together in a medium mixing bowl over a wet paper towel (to keep it from skidding). Take a whisk-full (or about a couple tablespoons) of the hot thickened milk and quickly beat it into the eggs until the mixture is relatively smooth with some tiny lumps. Keep whisking in small amounts of the milk into the egg mixture, and continue until the eggs smooth out completely. Now you can start adding big spoon-fulls of the milk, until you’ve added about half of it to the eggs.
  3. Once you’ve whisked in about 1/2, slowly pour the egg mixture back into the milk mixture while whisking. Set this over medium-low heat, and cook, whisking constantly, until it’s 165-170° F.
  4. Once it’s done, immediately stir in the orange blossom water and butter, and whisk together until the butter melts and completely incorporates. Chill in the refrigerator for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until it’s cool, but not too cold. Work on the fruit while you wait.
  5. Macerate the stone fruit: Combine the cut up stone-fruit with the sugar and salt, and let it sit in the refrigerator for at least 45 minutes while you prep the rest of the ingredients. Once it’s given off a decent amount of juice, strain it very well.
  6. Whip the cream: Move the bowl of your stand mixer to the freezer or refrigerator, and chill until you’re ready.
  7. A few minutes before assembling the trifle, combine the cream, sugar, orange blossom water, and salt in the chilled bowl. Whisk at medium speed until soft peaks form.
  8. To assemble: Slice the bananas and combine them with the strained fruit.
  9. Whisk the custard very well until it’s smooth and spreadable.
  10. Layer the ingredients in whatever order you want, ending with a layer of whipped cream.** Top with the additional sliced stone fruit.
  11. Let it chill for about 15 minutes, and then dig in.


See the notes above the recipe if you’d like this trifle to be less puddingy and more set.

* Measure the fruit by filling a 2-cup liquid measuring cup up to the 2-cup line 4 times. Or if you want to go by weight to be more exact, this is 1230 grams, or 2 pounds 11 ounces. Use stone fruit that’s ripe, but not extremely ripe. E.g., you don’t want the kinds of plums that feel like water balloons.

** Styling suggestions: Place the fruit around the perimeter before filling in the center, and let it kind of fall down the sides of the container, instead of trying to push it out to the sides (this will give you cleaner lines, instead of accidentally smushing all the custard to the edges). After you do the second fruit layer, wipe out the top portion of the sides of the trifle dish to wipe away the fruit juices (this will look much neater than trying to wipe down the sides after you’ve already topped it with whipped cream). Spoon whipped cream and custard around the edges and then in the center, without letting it fall down the sides. When you do the final whipped cream layer, don’t try to make it even and smooth—just dollop it in the center and give it a few swoops, and it’ll look much better.