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Panettone, apricot and mascarpone trifle

If you've started your Christmas with panettone, you might as well finish your day with it too.

By Emma Knowles & Lisa Featherby
  • 40 mins preparation
  • 30 mins cooking
  • Serves 8
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Panettone, apricot and mascarpone trifle
Using a shop-bought panettone takes some of the work out of this trifle. If the panettone is fresh, simply use it as is; if not, toasting it can bring it back to life. This trifle is free-form, so it can be assembled at the last minute; otherwise assemble it in advance and give it some time in the fridge - a couple of hours or even overnight - for the flavours to mingle. Serve it in individual glasses or bowls, or as one grand centrepiece. Start this recipe a day ahead to make the jelly.


  • 350 gm panettone, cut into rough 3cm cubes
  • 120 gm melted butter
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 60 gm caster sugar
  • 40 ml lemon liqueur, such as limoncello, plus extra for drizzling
  • 750 gm mascarpone, whisked until smooth
Lemon jelly
  • 400 gm (2 cups) caster sugar
  • Finely grated rind of 2 lemons
  • 200 ml lemon juice
  • 150 ml lemon liqueur, such as limoncello
  • 8 titanium-strength gelatine leaves, softened in cold water for 5 minutes
Roasted apricots
  • 165 gm each brown sugar and caster sugar
  • Pinch each of ground cinnamon and ground cardamom
  • 16 apricots, halved
  • Juice and thinly peeled rind of 1 orange and ½ lemon
  • 120 ml dessert wine
  • Scraped seeds of 1 vanilla bean


  • 1
    For lemon jelly, stir sugar, lemon rind and 500ml water in a saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves, bring to the boil and cook for 1 minute, then remove from heat and stir in lemon juice and liqueur. Squeeze excess water from gelatine, add to jelly mixture, stir to dissolve, then strain through a fine sieve into a container and refrigerate overnight to set.
  • 2
    For roasted apricots, preheat oven to 220C. Combine sugars and spices in a bowl, spread evenly in a roasting pan large enough to fit apricots in a single layer, then press apricots, cut-side down, into sugar, stand for 10 minutes, then turn cut-side up and scatter rinds in between fruit. Combine juices, wine and vanilla seeds in a jug, drizzle over apricots and roast, turning and basting with pan juices occasionally, until apricots are golden brown and tender (10-15 minutes). Set aside to cool.
  • 3
    Preheat oven to 180C. Toss panettone and butter in a bowl to coat, then spread on a baking tray lined with baking paper and bake until toasted (6-7 minutes). Set aside to cool.
  • 4
    Whisk yolks, sugar and liqueur in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water until thick and pale (3-4 minutes), transfer to an electric mixer and whisk until cooled to room temperature, then fold in mascarpone.
  • 5
    To assemble, spoon a few apricots and a little roasting liquid and mascarpone mixture into glasses, top with spoonfuls of lemon jelly, then panettone, drizzling panettone with a little extra liqueur to taste. Spoon on another layer of apricots and mascarpone mixture, then top with apricots and crumbled panettone and serve.