This beautiful, make-ahead dessert from Ricardo Larrivee is a perfect way to round out your next holiday feast.
Custard2/3 cup (150 mL) sugar
1/3 cup (75 mL) flour
2 cups (500 mL) hot milk
1 tbsp (15 mL) vanilla extract
Raspberry Jam2 tbsp (30 mL) cornstarch
2 tbsp (30 mL) water
1 1/4 lb (600 g) frozen raspberries (about 1.25 L or 5 cups), thawed, juice reserved
2/3 cups (150 mL) sugar
Topping1 cup (250 mL) 35% whipping cream
2 tbsp (30 mL) sugar
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract
24 ladyfingers, split down the middle
1 cup (250 mL) fresh raspberries
1 tbsp (15 mL) mini silver candy balls (dragees), for decorating
For the Custard
In a saucepan, off the heat, combine the sugar and flour. Add the eggs and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Slowly whisk in the hot milk. Bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly. Remove from the heat as soon as it begins to boil. Add the vanilla and stir to combine. Pour into a bowl. Place a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the warm custard. Let cool, then refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, about 2 hours.
For the Raspberry Jam
In a bowl, mix the cornstarch and water. Set aside.
In a saucepan, combine the raspberries, raspberry juice and sugar and bring to a boil. Add the cornstarch mixture while whisking. Simmer for 1 minute, or until the mixture thickens. Let cool. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, about 2 hours.
For the Topping and Assembly
In a bowl, whip the cream, sugar and vanilla until stiff peaks form.
In a 3-litre (12-cup) glass serving bowl, layer half the custard, half the ladyfingers and half the jam. Repeat, ending with the jam. Mound the whipped cream in the centre, leaving a 2.5-cm (1-inch) band of raspberry jam around the edge. Form a depression in the centre of the cream and fill it with the fresh raspberries. Decorate the raspberries with the dragées. Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.