I got this recipe from my cousin. It's very easy to make and this is her recipe for the sponge.
The cake was a shortcake type, which held up well and offered a perfect textural contrast. I used raspberries in place of strawberries because I was lucky enough to happen upon them. Two college athletes and the rest of the group agreed it was excellent. One tip, which was taught to me by my aunt many years ago when cooking vanilla pudding or custard as a filling: Cook it with a piece of lemon rind/zest. It offers a subtle dimension to the filling that is delightful, and was effective here. Also, I was low on sherry and substituted with Amaretto. No complaints! - 04 Aug 2001 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)
This was ok. Real English Trifle is made with a custard not instant pudding. substitute the pudding with Birds instant custard which you can buy at many grocery or specialty stores, or make your own custard. This makes the recipe more authentic and tastier. - 20 Nov 2008 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)
Excellent recipe. I substituted Amaretto for the Sherry, and used strawberries and blueberries for the fruit. For the raspberry jam, I used a gourmet raspberry dessert filling. The cake was a nice shortbread, not too sweet and had great texture. It didn't rise much for me either. Would make again for our Sunday dinner crowd. - 29 Jun 2003 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)