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French Recipe: Strawberry, Rum, Almond and Cream Trifle

by Jonell Galloway

A charlotte is traditionally fruit sautéed in butter which is then placed in a mold lined with bread. In our day, the bread is usually ladyfingers, but I’ve used financier, a dense almond flour cake made with beurre noisette, giving it a distinctive flavor.

Insteading of sautéing the strawberries, I’ve marinated them in rum and used the marinade to “wet” the cake, similar to the way the British make trifle.


600 g strawberries
2 T. brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon

4 T. rum
3/4 c. water
4 financier cakes, individual size (or other type of soft, but dense, almond cakes)
200 g thick cream
1/2 vanilla bean
2 T. brown sugar

4 parfait dishes

  1. Top strawberries and cut in half. Place in mixing bowl.
  2. Mix in 2 T. brown sugar and cinnamon.
  3. Add rum and water. Mix gently.
  4. Leave for 30 minutes, mixing gently from time to time. A natural sauce should form. If it doesn’t, add a little more water and rum.
  5. Meanwhile, mix cream with vanilla from vanilla bean and brown sugar.
  6. Break up 1/3 of each financier into each parfait cup. Spoon in 1/9th of strawberries into each cup, pouring some juice onto the cake to moisten it.
  7. Cover with 1/9 of cream.
  8. Add two more layers of financier, strawberries and cream, in the same proportions, ending with cream.
  9. Decorate top with bits of strawberry, mint, or dark chocolate.
  10. Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.


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