pumpkin Trifle

(serves 8-12)


Layers of Flavors and Textures 
Billowy whipped cream spiked with maple syrup cradles a moist pumpkin bread and spiced nut crunch with ribbons of caramel running throughout. All the elements can be made a day or two in advance, except for the whipped cream. The recipes are all here but your secret is safe with us if you are pressed for time and opt to use store-bought pumpkin bread and caramel sauce.

Pumpkin Bread
1-1/2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp clove
1/4 tsp cardamom    
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1/2 cup coconut (or vegetable) oil
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Butter a 9x5x3 loaf pan.

Combine and sift all of the dry ingredients into a large bowl.  In a smaller bowl, mix together the remaining wet ingredients: eggs, pumpkin, oil and vanilla.  Pour the well-combined wet ingredients over the dry ones and stir just until there are no more lumps.

Pour the batter into a loaf pan and bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean when poked in the center of the loaf.  Allow to cool completely.  Cut half of the loaf into small crouton-sized cubes using a serrated bread knife. Enjoy the other half for another use.

Caramel Sauce
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
2 Tbsp unsalted butter

In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, add the sugar and water and stir to combine.  Cook, without stirring until the mixture turns a deep amber color, about 5-6 minutes.

Remove from heat and slowly whisk in the heavy cream, stirring until smooth.  Add the butter and whisk until melted and combined.

Spiced Nut Crunch
1 cup hazelnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
2 Tbsp coconut oil
4 Tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp clove
1/2 tsp coarse sea salt
1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all ingredients, except for chocolate chips, in a medium bowl and stir until well combined. Spread out on baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes until nuts are toasted.  Stir once or twice for even browning.  Remove from oven and allow to cool.  Transfer to a bowl and stir in chocolate chips.

Maple Whipped Cream
1 cup heavy whipping cream
4-5 Tbsp maple syrup
Using an electric mixer, beat cream until soft peaks form.  With mixer at low speed, slowly add maple syrup until combined.

Trifle Assembly
Starting with a spoonful of whipped cream, begin to layer each jar with several cubes of pumpkin bread, a sprinkle of nut crunch and a drizzle of caramel sauce.  Repeat until desired serving size is reached.  If you are transporting these in individual jars, wait until serving the trifle to add the last dollop of whipped cream for a prettier presentation.

Trifles are traditionally served in a large glass vessel so that you can see and appreciate the different layers.  We put them in individual jars with lids that can be safely transported to a friend’s house when dessert is our contribution.


view related blog post:  When pumpkin is the theme