Ani’s Cheesecake Trifle with Rum Berry Sauce
For the cake:Prepare 1 box of white cake mix baking in a 9x13 inch pan according to the box instructions. Set aside to cool in pan.
For the cheese topping:1 package (8 ounces), cream cheese, room temperature and cut into chunks
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
2/3 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tub (8 ounces) whipped cream (I use Cool Whip)
Place cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium high with the paddle attachment until smooth and lump-free. Pour in milk and add vanilla. Beat on medium for 1 minute. Stop and using a rubber spatula, scrape down the sides of the bowl and pull up any cheese stuck to the bottom of the bowl. Beat on medium high for 2-3 minutes or until smooth and lump-free. Remove bowl from mixer. Gently fold in whipped cream with the rubber spatula, careful not to over mix as you’ll deflate the cream. Place in refrigerator while you make the sauce.
For the sauce:2 cups frozen mixed berries
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons dark rum
2 tablespoons cold water
1 teaspoon cornstarch
Put berries in a strainer and rinse under cold water just long enough to remove any ice crystals. Place berries into a saucepan and add sugar. Boil, stirring occasionally, on medium heat until sugar melts and berries began to break down, about 3-5 minutes. Add zest and rum. Let simmer, stirring for 1 minute. While simmering, use a fork to whisk together the water and cornstarch in a small bowl. Add to simmering berries, lower heat and allow to thicken, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
Note: Up to this point, everything can be made a day ahead of time with the cheese and berry sauce (once cooled) being kept in the refrigerator until 15 minutes before you’re ready to assemble.
To assemble:Place one to two tablespoons of sauce in the bottom of a trifle cup. Cut the cake into small squares and pack a single layer of it in the bottom of the cup over the sauce. Drizzle a tablespoon or two of sauce over the cake. Next, add cheese topping to just below the rim. Repeat the steps for remaining cups. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Right before serving, drizzle more berry sauce over the tops.