Tipsy Laird Pudding

Tipsy Laird

A heated debate started out in the “Friend” offices last week, with a famous pudding causing confusion and alarm.

Trifle – it’s a real crowd pleaser of a dessert.

But there seem to be endless variations on how to make it. A recent debate in the “Friend” office on the subject of trifle revealed many differences of opinion! My mum always insisted that a Scottish trifle should never contain jelly, and having done a bit of research, she’s right. A traditional Scottish trifle does not contain jelly, and is also known by the fabulous name of Tipsy Laird.

Some of the “Friend” team refused to believe a trifle could be made without jelly, and so there was only one way to prove them wrong – by making one and bringing it in (hmm, perhaps there was an ulterior motive to their disbelief!) Here is my recipe for a traditional Scottish trifle if you’d like to try it for yourself.

Angela’s Tipsy Laird

  • Take one shop-bought Madeira cake of around 275g. Cut into cubes, and press these into the bottom of a large glass bowl. Pour over a generous amount of sherry – enough to darken the sponge but not saturate it. Usually 6-8 tablespoons will do nicely.
  • Now spread a layer of fresh fruit over the sponge. I used a mixture of raspberries and strawberries, but any summer berries work well, as do bananas. If summer berries are out of season, I use a pack of frozen ones from the supermarket. Use as much or as little fruit as you like to give an even layer.
  • To be even more traditional, leave out the fruit. My mum’s version of this trifle uses raspberry jam instead; she would slice the Madeira cake in half, spread it liberally with jam, then cut the cake into pieces. But I like the fruit better!
  • Now make one pint of custard using traditional custard powder. If you try to make this trifle with ready-made custard it won’t set, so you really do have to make your own. Follow the instructions on the custard powder pack, and make the tablespoons heaped to give a better set.
  • Pour the custard evenly over the sponge and berries and refrigerate till set. Give it at least three hours.
  • Whip 330ml double cream and spread on top of the set custard. Finish by sprinkling the top with a crushed chocolate Flake or a handful of toasted flaked almonds.

The trifle tastes even better the second day, but I’m sure you won’t have any left by then!


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Karlie Simmonds

Karlie has worked in Digital Media for over 10 years, she is passionate about health and wellbeing and lives in Edinburgh with her partner, children, and Pug, Poppy.