Jake's Trifle

Jake's Favorite Whopper Trifle

1 chocolate cake mix baked according to directions
4 c. chocolate pudding (homemade is best, but if not use the cooked Jello kind)
2 c. cream whipped and sweetened

Tear the cake into pieces and line a trifle bowl, or a big glass bowl with half of the cake.  Add a layer of pudding, cream and then some crushed up Whoppers.  Repeat cover with foil and refrigerate.  Serve with a drizzle of caramel or chocolate fudge sauce, and more Whoppers.

Yesterday may have been a loathsome day for most of the United States, but it is the day we celebrate our favorite red headed childs birthday.  We make sure our taxes are done before the 15th so Jake can have the day to himself.   Jake turned 9 yesterday and requested this trifle as his birthday cake.  We love trifle at our home.  As a kid I rarely had a birthday cake, but I sure had a lot of birthday trifles.  It is a very English tradition, but it has always been a Garner one too.  The standard trifle at our house was always angel food cake, crushed strawberries or raspberries, vanilla pudding, and cream on top.  It was always really good if my mom would sprinkle some nuts on top too.  

If you have never had a trifle you must try one.  They are absolutely beautiful to look at and a show stopper when served.  A good trifle is made the day before it is served so the juices can soak into the cake.  I am not much of a soggy food lover.  In fact I have been known to throw a fizzy tit or two in my life over a soggy sandwich.  They usually get thrown out the window before James can say wait, and then I do my best impression of a "Rod Garner" pout.  I act as if I am no longer hungry and I turn into the starving martyr.  Silly I know, but blame it on my dad!   Trifle on the other hand needs to be soggy.  You know it is ready to serve when the white angel food cake is now crimson and beautiful.  

There are a ton of different ways to make a trifle.  My aunt Jone made one once that had brownie chunks, caramel, cream, pudding, and Snickers candy bar pieces.  Delish!!  But James' all time favorite trifle was the Black Forest Trifle I made the first birthday he had after we were married.  I was trying so hard back then to be a good little wife.  I really wasn't a very good cook, but I did at least have a secret weapon.....my granny's fabulous cookbook.  My grandma and her sister Jean wrote a cookbook together years ago, and it is still my favorite.  It is full of all the favorite standard recipes, but there are numerous lovelies in there that can be found no where else.  Take for instance, Spinach Balls, Oriental Pork Roast, the Famous Christmas Egg Nog, and all sorts of orange fluffy desserts.  It is the best cookbook.  Well it also has a recipe for the Black Forest Trifle.  

It was a simple recipe.  Chocolate cake, chocolate pudding, cherry pie filling, and cream.  The secret to the recipe though was in the almond extract that was stirred into the cherry pie filling. The recipe called for 3 T. of almond extract to be stirred into the cherries and so that's what I did.  The trifle looked gorgeous!  I couldn't have been more proud of myself.  I had truly made a masterpiece.  Later that night we had something very forgettable for dinner, and then it was time for the trifle.  In went the big spoon and out came the dessert.  James took a huge big bite, and then started to cough.  Crap!  The trifle tasted like cherry Nyquil and burned the whole way down.  It was quite alcoholic and not in any good way.  Don't get me wrong.  I  always like it when a little rum  just happens to be in my Banana's Foster, or there's a little Kaluhua in my Tirimisu, but not Nyquil in the trifle.  I called my granny right up to find out what I had done wrong.  She was so sympathetic in a giggly sort of way.  "Oh honey, that was a typo.  There are a few of them in the cookbook.  I though I found them all, but it looks like I missed one."  she said.  Actually I was only supposed to add 3 t. of almond extract to the cherries, but I had added 3 times to much.  We didn't even own a cat back then who could have eaten the trifle, so in the garbage it went...or at least that's what we tell people:)

So if you haven't tried trifle give it a shot.  If you want a little kick though for the party, just make sure your alcohol of choice doesn't taste like cherry Nyquil!


  1. Youre so great! Jake is a lucky ducky! Nine years??? I feel really old. I remember coming up to watch Jed, Emma and Jake one summer weekend when you lived in the little white house. Jake was not quite a year old. I love those kidlets sooooo much and miss all of you terribly!

  2. Hey Lisa, I was wondering if I could get your recipe for this awesome chocolate cake you made Colette for her birthday? Is it on your blog somewhere or would you email it to me? n.t.snyder@juno.com
    I would be so grateful! Nikki



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