The Akumal Foodie: Mango and Almond Trifle

–Mentioned in some of the older Mexican cookbooks of the mid-1800s, this Mango and Almond Trifle dessert is equally as satisfying today, and particularly offers a lighter touch after a spicy meal.


Divided into four major steps (each with sub-steps) and from the repertoire of Lunita Restaurant is Mango and Almond Trifle which serves 8-10.

Step I–the Cake                                   Step II–the Fruit

3/4 cup cake flour                                   4 large mangos (2 1/4 lbs. total)

1 tsp. baking powder                              1/3 to 2/3 cup sugar, plus more if needed

6 large eggs, room temperature           2 tbsp. fresh lime juice

1/2 cup plus 2 tbsps. sugar                       1/2 tsp. pure almond extract, optional

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

3 tsps. hot water

Step III–the Syrup                            Step IV–the  Finishing

1/3 cup sugar                                             1 cup whipped cream, sweetened

2/3 cup water                                             toasted almonds

1/2 cup dry sherry or orange liqueur

Step I–the Cake

Set oven to 350º.  Lightly grease and flour a 17 x 11 inch jelly roll pan, then line it with parchment paper that has also been greased and floured.

Sift together flour and baking powder.  Separate eggs:  in large bowl of an electric mixer, place 6 yolks; in another large bowl place 4 of the whites (refrigerate or freeze 2 remaining whites for future use).  To the yolks, add 1/2 cup of the sugar, the vanilla, and  the hot water.  Beat at medium high speed for 5 full minutes until light in color and texture.  Using a whisk or rubber spatula, gently fold in the flour mixture in 2 additions.

Immediately beat the whites at medium speed until they hold soft peaks.  Add 1 tbsp. of remaining sugar; beat for 1 minute.  Then add the remaining sugar and beat for a minute or so longer until the whites hold nearly firm (but not stiff) shiny peaks.  Fold into the batter in three additions.  Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.  Bake until browned and springy to the touch, about 15 minutes.  Cool 10 minutes on rack, then turn over onto the rack and carefully remove parchment.  Cool completely.

Step II–the Fruit  With a knife, peel the mangos, then cut the flesh from the pit.  Chop into 1″ pieces, then place in bowl and mash with a fork;  you should have 2 generous cups.  Add 1/3 cup of sugar, mix well , and let stand for approximately 30 minutes to draw juice from the fruit.  Strain this mixture and put the liquid into a medium sauce pan.  Simmer over medium heat until reduced to 1/2 cup.  Then stir in the mangos and simmer gently 5 minutes longer, stirring often.  Remove from heat and stir in the lime juice, almond extract (if using), and enough of the remaining 1/3 cup of the sugar to sweeten to taste.

Step III–the Syrup  In a small saucepan combine 2/3 cup water and 1/3 cup sugar.  Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve.  Cool slightly, the stir in sherry or liqueur.

Step IV –the Finishing   Cut the cake into two 8″ circles (keep scraps for later use).  Place one circle on  a shallow serving dish 10 or 12 inches in diameter.  Brush thoroughly with the syrup.  Spread on half of the fruit mixture, then top with the other cake circle. Brush with remaining syrup and spread with the remaining fruit mixture.  Smooth the top and refrigerate for several hours.

This dessert gets better with age–even 3 or 4 days is possible.  Store in fridge well-covered!

To serve, sprinkle top with toasted almonds, cut into wedges, and top with whipped cream.


Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.