9 Layers of Martha

Posted by Brette in Entertaining | Food | Holidays

I know the holidays are over for most people, but in my family we are still struggling through it! I was assigned to bring dessert for 12 to a family holiday party last night. I decided to make Martha’s Triple Chocolate Peppermint Trifle from Season’s Eatings, page 114.

I decided I wanted to make it in 12 individual bowls rather than one big trifle bowl. A big trifle bowl looks pretty, but when you serve it, it looks like a pile of mush (which in my opinion is not all that appetizing). So I needed 12 bowls. I have a set of 12 pink goblets that was perfect, but Mr. MarthaandMe felt that there was no way we could safely transport those. I have a set of 8 cute little glass dessert bowls, but I need 12. Off we went to Bed, Bath and Beyond where I bought 12 individual trifle bowls for $30 (the things I do for Martha).

The cake

The cake

I started cooking this yesterday afternoon. First I made the cake, which was pretty simple. Next I made the syrup. Martha says to mix water and sugar and add chocolate liqueur. I don’t have any liqueur so I cheated and mixed cocoa powder and some cocoa mix with water till it was dark and thick.

Next I made the mousse. You cook cream and melt white chocolate in it.

The syrup

The syrup

Then you cool it in an ice bath. Next you fold in whipped cream. At the end you add crushed candy canes.

After that I made the pudding, which was pretty basic, but also requires an ice bath (just call me the ice queen).

All of this needed to chill for at least 4 hours.  This was New Year’s Day and I was tired to the bone from our New Year’s Eve

The mousse

The mousse

extravaganza. By the time everything was chilled, I was so tired I almost could not keep my eyes open to fill the bowls.

First I had to wash the bowls. And of course I managed to chip one. Sigh.

This dessert has a back breaking 9 layers:

– mousse

– cake

– syrup

The pudding

The pudding

– pudding

-mousse

– cake

– syrup

-pudding

-mousse

It all fit perfectly in the little trifle bowls, although it took a long time to assemble. If you made this in one

Assembly

Assembly

big bowl, it would go much more quickly.

Once it’s in the bowls, it needs to set for at least 12 hours.

Transporting this to our destination was a challenge. Mr. MarthaAndMe put them all in a big cardboard box with bubble wrap between the bowls and we got them there without incident.

Before serving, I made whipped cream and put that on top and then

Ready to serve

Ready to serve

sprinkled with more crushed peppermint. I put the trifle bowls on a dessert plate and stuck one of my Chocolate Peppermint cookies (Dec. Living Cookie of the Month – had exactly 12 left so that worked out perfectly) on the top. They looked very pretty.

As for the taste test? Well, this was a very rich dessert and most people at the table did not finish it. It needs a lot more peppermint than it had. I think I might add some peppermint extract to the cake or the mousse. It just tasted like a mouthful of chocolate and cream and was a bit overwhelming I thought.

On the table

On the table

I don’t think I would make this dessert again. It was very time-consuming. It’s festive and pretty, but I’d rather eat something else.

This is my last offiicial holiday 2008 post! Tomorrow we’re moving on to January Living. It feels like a breath of fresh air after all the candies, decorations, and desserts December was filled with. I can hardly wait to focus on weight loss, healthy eating, home organizing and simplification. I am soooo holiday’ed out at this point – but we have one more party tonight to get through!

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2 Responses

  • Tara says:

    Wow they look so good! You really went over the top making those! It is just crazy to me how you make the things Martha does and you find ways of improving them. It just is beyond me how Martha doesn’t have this test kitchened out to the point of perfection before it goes on her show or magazine. You are like Martha’s test kitchen!

  • LOL! I wish! I can’t imagine what her test kitchens must be like. I certainly am finding they don’t do that great of a job in some instances.