Recipe by: Anjum Anand
This is really luscious, billowy yet textured. The custard only takes about 15 minutes to make, but you can buy a 400ml tub of good-quality custard instead (this will probably have a vanilla flavour but it will be fine). Packets of grated coconut, from the freezer section at Indian and oriental shops, are the best store cupboard cheat and I highly recommend it. You can use desiccated instead, but it will not have the same texture and taste. If you like pomegranate juice, I would add some in as below, it adds a lovely flavour and also soaks slightly into the sponge but, if you don’t have any, if still works really well.
For the coconut custard
200ml whole milk
200ml double cream
4 egg yolks
2 tbsp caster sugar, plus 2 tsp, plus more for
1 1/3 level tsp cornflour
65g grated fresh coconut (I use frozen and
allow it to defrost)
For the rest
175g strawberries, washed, hulled and
seeds from 2 pomegranates
75ml pomegranate juice (optional, see recipe
lemon juice, to taste
2 large, or 3 medium, ripe mangoes
300ml double cream
275–300g shop-bought madeira cake
Start with the custard. Place the milk and cream in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, whisk the yolks, the 2 tbsp of sugar and the cornflour together in a large bowl until smooth. Slowly pour in the hot cream mixture, whisking all the while so that the eggs do not scramble. Pour the whole thing back into the rinsed-out saucepan and place over a gentle heat. Return to just below the boil over a very gentle heat, stirring the mixture constantly; this takes me 10–12 minutes. Cook for another 30–40 seconds, then take off the heat. Stir in the coconut and leave to cool.
Place the strawberries and three-quarters of the pomegranate seeds in a bowl, add the pomegranate juice, if using. Add sugar to taste and a squeeze of lemon juice, to balance the sweet-sharp flavours. Mash some of the strawberries into the sauce and leave to macerate. Meanwhile, prepare the mangoes. Cut the cheeks from the mangoes, peel, then roughly chop. Cut the sides off the stone and see if you can get any unbruised flesh off these as well.
Whip the cream until it is at the soft peak stage.
Cut the cake into 1cm pieces and line the base of a glass trifle bowl. Pour over the macerated strawberries and pomegranate with their juices. Spoon the mango evenly over the top. Pour over the custard. Spoon the cream on top, cover with cling film and chill in the fridge until ready to serve, decorated with the reserved pomegranate seeds. You can also use small glasses to make these trifles in individual portions, which look lovely.