Effortless to pull off? Check. Tastes better the longer it sits? Check. Make this beauty up to one day before company arrives.
3 1/2 cups frozen or fresh cranberries
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup orange juice
2 1/2 cups milk
2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large egg yolks
1/3 cup cornstarch
3 tablespoons orange juice
1 (16-oz.) frozen pound cake, thawed
1 1/2 cups whipping cream, whipped to soft peaks
Garnishes: fresh rosemary sprigs, white chocolate curls
How to Make It
Bring first 3 ingredients to a simmer in a saucepan, and cook, stirring occasionally, 6 minutes or until sugar dissolves and orange juice is reduced by half.
Remove from heat, and cool 15 minutes. Cover and chill until ready to use, or refrigerate in an airtight container up to 4 days.
Whisk together milk and next 3 ingredients in a saucepan over medium-low heat, and cook, whisking occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat.
Whisk together egg yolks and next 2 ingredients in a medium bowl until smooth. Gradually whisk 1/2 cup milk mixture into egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly until smooth. Pour yolk mixture into warm milk mixture in pan, whisking until blended. Cook over medium-high heat, whisking constantly, 3 to 5 minutes or until mixture thickens and begins to bubble.
Transfer to a bowl, and place plastic wrap directly on mixture (to prevent film from forming). Chill 30 minutes to 3 days.
Cut pound cake into 1-inch cubes. Layer one-third cake cubes in a 5-qt. trifle dish. Top with one-third each orange pastry cream, cranberry mixture, and whipped cream. Repeat layers twice. Serve immediately, or cover and chill up to 24 hours.
Note: We tested with Sara Lee All Butter Pound Cake.