The best Christmas trifle ever

The best Christmas trifle ever



I love Christmas and everything involved. I love the build up and the festive feeling of December. I host the Turkey Tasting Theatre at the Ideal Home Show Christmas so you could say by December I am fully prepped with my Turkey skills. 

This year we were lucky enough to be sponsored by Campbell Bothers  They say: Campbell Brothers offer knowledge and experience through over 100 years working as butchers striving for butchery excellence and expanding into fish & seafood and produce to offer a full range of ingredients to professional kitchens throughout Scotland and North England. Despite the changing times and developments in technology and hi-tec production processes, Campbell Brothers have maintained their traditional values of quality product with a quality service.

Campbell brothers work with Copas Turkeys. and Copas Turkeys supplied all the Turkeys at the show. As a chef I am lucky that I get to work with fantastic suppliers and I can honestly say Copas Turkeys are the best I have EVER tasted. FACT: Copas Turkeys are loved by some of Britain’s best butchers, farm shops, delis and food halls as well as a loyal following of home delivery and farm gate customers. Christmas is truly a day of celebration, relaxation and gaiety which is why, over the last fifty years, we have dedicated each year to producing the finest award winning turkeys in the land, just for Christmas.


The Turkeys are a wonderful flavour. Succulent, juicy and full of Christmas joy

The Turkeys are a wonderful flavour. Succulent, juicy and full of Christmas joy


Wonderful Copas Turkeys

Wonderful Copas Turkeys


We don’t get to see everyone at Christmas and I like to host few ‘Christmas dinners’ before the big day. The one thing I have learned is PREPARATION IS KEY. I made my herb butter two days in advance. I use the herb butter under the skin of the turkey as well as on top. 

Herb Butter:

250g salted butter

Handful sage, chopped

Handful Thyme, Chopped

100g Chopped dried cranberries ( soak in port for 24 hours )

Zest of three clementine



Squish and squelch all the ingredients together with your hands. Leave in the fridge but take it out the night before you are going to use it. I put it in the microwave for 20 seconds to soften it. You need it to be soft so you can smear it under the skin. I still had a few lumps in mine but that’s fine. When removing the skin from the breast I use a table spoon to gently ease it away. You may need to make a small incision with a knife to start.

 Halve an onion, apple and clementine and place in the cavity of the Copas Turkey 


The herb butter has been smooched under the skin

The herb butter has been smooched under the skin

I then use a lot of foil as I like to make an airtight parcel. Lay the seasoned Copas Turkey on sliced Onion, parsnip, garlic, carrots and potatoes. Add 400ml of white wine or chicken stock.


Season and wrapped up

Season and wrapped up

If you have a Copas Turkey you will be sent a pop up cooking timer. Insert your pop-up cooking timer at a point approx 3cm to the right or left of the front tip of the breastbone. The timer should not
touch any bone.

Follow the Copas Turkey PREPARATION tips 

pre-heat the oven to 230°C/450°F/Gas 8 (or 210°C for fan ovens). Cook your turkey at this temperature for the first 30 mins & then lower the oven temperature to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5 (or 170°C for fan ovens). Total cooking time will be approximately 30-35 mins per kg.
Weight Full Cooking Time Weight Full Cooking Time
2kg 1hr 15mins 7kg 3hr 40mins
3kg 1hr 45mins 8kg 4hrs
4kg 2hr 35mins 9kg 4hr 25mins
5kg 2hr 55mins 10kg 4hr 45mins
6kg 3hr 15mins 11kg 5hrs
Do not overcook your turkey – it should be moist & succulent. It will be ready when the juices run clear when tested with a fork (plunge into the deepest part of the thigh or breast), or when your pop-up cooking timer has popped! If using a thermometer, the internal cooked temperature will be 165°F/74°C.

If following my recipe – Approximately 30mins before the full cooking time, remove foil so the breast bronzes. Make sure you allow the turkey to rest.

The best Brussels Spouts EVER 

I love this recipe and I hope you try it.

 Brussels Spouts puree

300g Boiled until soft

150ml Creme fresh

Pinch of fresh nutmeg

Salt and pepper

Blitz in a food mixer until a smooth puree is formed.

Brussels Sprouts & Chestnuts

300g Shredded brussels sprouts

100g Vacuum packed chestnuts, crumbled

100g Pancetta


Bring a large saucepan of waterloo the boiling add the shredded sprouts. Boil for five minutes android.

In a large frying pan, fry the pancetta until crispy. Add in the sprouts and chestnuts. Fry for five minutes whilst constantly stirring.

To Serve on warmed plate:

Drop and drag a large tablespoon of the puree then sprinkle on the brussels sprouts mixture.




I love this recipe

I love this recipe



With Chestnuts


I like to roast my carrots and parsnips in a little olive oil and maple syrup. It really brings out the sweetness


I add a little Maple syrup and olive oil

I add a little Maple syrup and olive oil


I made the stuffing a few weeks before and froze it. It was delicious!!!


400g Pork sausage meat

150g pancetta, fried

150g Chestnuts, tinned or vacum packed

Fresh sage, handful chopped

Fresh thyme, handful chopped

100g Port soaked cranberries

150g Mixed nuts, toasted 


Mix all of the ingredients together and either roll into ball or put into a baking dish. You can freeze or bake on 170c for 4o minutes.




I set the table with a few silvery decorations. It looked very Christmassy. 



The sausage in blankets, bread sauce and gravy I bought. Don’t judge. They all tasted great and I did add the cooking juices to the gravy. The roasties were home made with duck fat. Super crispy and fluffy on the inside.


The Trifle 





The best Christmas trifle ever

The best Christmas trifle ever


Clementine prosecco trifle

Clementine prosecco trifle

The trifle does take a while to make but is worth it. Once a year you can pull all the stops out!


Line a baking  tray

Pre heat the oven to 200c 

Choux Pastry for the profiteroles:

60g plain flour, on parchment paper 

150ml water

50g butter

2 eggs, beaten


Heat the water and butter until the butter melts. Do not boil as the water will evaporate. 

Turn off the heat and add in the flour. Quickly and firmly beat in the flour until a dough is formed and it comes away from the sides.

Beat in the egg a bit at a time ensuring it is fully incorporated before you add more. The paste should glossy.

Sprinkle a touch of water onto the lined baking tray. This will help create steam. Pipe onto a lined baking tray ensuring an 1 1/2 space between each profiteroles. 

Bake for five minutes at 200c and then turn down to 180 oc for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Remove from the oven and make a small hole in the back of each profiterole. Allow to cool and dry out.



300ml Whipping cream

Vanilla pod, de seeded 


Whisk together the cream and vanilla seeds until soft peaks are formed. Pipe into the profiteroles. Line the bottom of the trifle dish.

Creme Patisserie with orange oil

4 Egg yolks

125g caster sugar

45g cornflour 

300ml full fat milk

200ml double cream 

2 Tsp of orange oil 

I vanilla pod, split lengthways and seeds removed.

Directions :

Gently heat the milk, cream, vanilla and orange oil in a heavy bottomed pan.

In a large bowl whisk together the egg yolk, corn flour and sugar 

When the milk and cream mixture is about to boil take off the heat and slowly pour half the mixture into the egg and sugar mixture stirring constantly. 

When incorporated pour back into the saucepan with the remaining creamed milk mixture. Place on a low heat and stir until thickened. Use a large whisk. 

Transfer back into the large bow and contact cling until cooled.

Once ccooled spread over the profiteroles in the trifle dish.

Place in the fridge.

Two stages complete of the trifle

Two stages complete of the trifle

Prosecco jelly

Bottle of prosecco

5 gelatine leaves

2 tsp of orange oil

Juice of 4 large oranges 

Segments of 4 clementines. Pith removed. 


Heat a bottle of prosecco

Heat a bottle of prosecco




Boil the orange juice and then add the gelatine leaves. Stir until dissolved.

Heat a bottle of prosecco in a large pan and add in the orange gelatine 

Add in the orange oil

Allow to cool and slightly thicken

Pour over the creme pat in the trifle dish and add in the clementine segments

Place in the fridge to set overnight.


Italian Meringue;

4 egg whites

200g caster sugar

100ml water

Whisk the egg whites until soft peaks are formed

( Whilst whisking) In a heavy bottomed pan heat the sugar and water to 121c.

Gently pour into the margin and whisk until the cooled. The meringue should be glossy.

Pipe onto the jelly and use blow torch to brown slightly




I made simple white chocolate decorations and added edible gold glitter. I use the pump action glitters from The Cake Decoration company


Please do let me know if you make any of these recipes.

Merry Christmas!


Lisa x 


@cocoabox TWITTER

@lisamarleychef Instagram


PS – We made a delicious Turkey Thai curry with the leftovers 




I LOVE chocolate and I Love brownies. They are so easy to make and freeze really well.

Take a look at my new recipe. I think you will find it a hit! If you make the brownies please tweet a photo! @thecocoabox


Lisa x



Truffle shop at Topshop



The Cocoa Box had so much fun this Easter Bank holiday weekend. We were at Topshop’s flagship store on Oxford Street for three days. Customers got to pick their favourite topping for our chocolatiers to use on their own hand made truffles.

The truffle Shop was a huge success.

Who doesn’t love chocolate???


We set up early Thursday morning.

We set up early Thursday morning.


Out three day Pop-Up at Topshop

Our three day Pop-Up at Topshop



3 day pop up at Topshop topshoptopman_easter_lowres_026-2

Last night we had the pleasure of hosting an event for  Farfetch

After looking on the website I am ready to update my wardrobe. So many gorgeous pieces perfect for spring.

Farfetch invited 15 influential bloggers to attend our chocolate making workshop with chocolate martinis at Farfetch HQ.

The evening was a great success and a good time was had by all. A LOT of chocolate as consumed!


Chocolate & fashion meet!

Chocolate & fashion meet!


We made these cupcakes with the logo. Salted caramel, very nice!

We made these cupcakes with the logo. Salted caramel, very nice!


Chocolate making workshop for influential bloggers

Chocolate making workshop for influential bloggers











These Oreo cupcakes are a real Sunday afternoon treat. They go really well with a cup of tea!


Pre heat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4

Line a muffin tray with 10 cupcake cases


150g soft salted butter

150g self raising flour

150g caster sugar

2 large eggs

Tablespoon of golden syrup

Vanilla Pod  – scrape out the seeds

Cream the butter and sugar until pale, light and fluffy. Slowly add in the eggs. Mix in the golden syrup and vanilla seeds. Sift the flour and add the milk to create a dropping consistency.

Spoon into muffin cases and bake for 20 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.


Oreo Buttercream
1 block of un salted butter – very, very soft

300g of icing sugar

8 crushed Oreo cookies – very fine and

4 Broken Oreo cookies – to decorate

5 table spoons of Milk or cream

In a stand mixer or with an electric whisk whisk just the butter for at least five minutes. Add in the icing sugar a Oreo mix. Sprinkle over 3 tbsp of room temperature whole milk. Start mixing slowly and gradually increase to full speed.

TIP – Use a WIDE nozzel or spatular the mixture on the cooled cakes as the cookie pieces will get stuck in the nozzel.

Decorate with broken Oreo Cookies



I seem to be making a lot of cakes lately… I do love cakes but it takes time to perfect the art of cake making.

Even though I have an advanced level 3 in Patisserie and Confectionary, I still need to keep getting better.

As they say, practice makes perfect!



Chocolate fudge cake

Chocolate fudge cake

Bad girl cupcakes

Bad girl cupcakes


How to make this pretty cake

How to make this pretty cake

Valentine Chocolate Cake by Lisa Marley

Above is the link to the film on how to make this cake.

I love this cake and even though I’m not really a fan of valentines day, I am a fan of chocolate!

Pre heat the oven to 160 (fan)

Have all the ingredients weighted out and at room temperature.

Grease and line three cake tines.


150g caster sugar

135g light brown muscovado sugar

100g salted butter

4 eggs

300g self raising flower

4 tablespoons of cocoa powder

2 tsp of bicarbonate of soda

130g dark chocolate, melted and cooled

3 tablespoons of treacle

4 tablespoons of milk, warmed

Cream the sugar and butter until light and fluffy.

Slowly add the eggs

Sieve the flour, bicarbonate of soda and cocoa powder

gentle mix int he melted chocolate and treacle

add the milk

Pour into the three cake tins and bake for 20 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.


350g melted dark chocolate

roughly 500g vanilla butter cream – this is a semi naked cake so you will be able to re use the buttercream



Cocoa Box Christmas Pudding Truffles 

Christmas in a truffle!

Christmas in a truffle!

One small Christmas pudding

300g dark chocolate – melted and cooled

150g  very cold cream – double or whipping

splash of orange liquor

Cocoa Powder.


Crumble the Christmas pudding onto a lined backing tray and cover with foil. Bake for around 10 minutes. Allow to cool then blitz in a blender to a chunky crumb.

Crumbled and baked

Crumbled and baked


In the meantime melt the chocolate in a bowl over a very low heat. (Bain Marie) and allow to cool

Adding the pudding to the chocoalte

Adding the pudding to the chocoalte


Add a splash of liquor to the chilled cream.


Mix the blitzed Christmas pudding into the chocolate

Stir in the cream. Do this quickly as it will begin to set immediately.


Adding the cream

Adding the cream

Chill for 20 minutes to an hour.


Shape into truffle sized bites and roll in cocoa powder. Zest orange over the truffles for an extra zingy flavor.


shaping and rolling

shaping and rolling


Adding the zest of an orange works really well

Adding the zest of an orange works really well

A selection of photos taken from some of our corporate events. The perfect Christmas Party!

A selection of photos taken from some of our corporate events. The perfect Christmas Party! We run 100’s of events in London and Brighton. We can design an event to suit your budget. We offer great prices for early bird bookings.


EMAIL to find our more about our range of fantastic events and workshops. We specialise in edible fun. We offer bespoke Christmas parties and events in various London and Brighton venues. We can also travel to you.

Mmm tuck in….

Mmm tuck in….

Chocolate truffles


MESSY FUN tables corporate cocoa box workshop corp buffett

One of my demos at the Foodies Festival

One of my demos at the Foodies Festival

The fantastic Malaysian chef Norman Musa
The fantastic Malaysian chef Norman Musa

It was a busy day at the Chefs Theatre, Foodies Festival
It was a busy day at the Chefs Theatre, Foodies Festival

Tatton Park Foodies Festival

Tatton Park Foodies Festival




I have had the most wonderful three days t the beautiful Tatton Park in Cheshire. The Foodies Festivals run around the country in the Summer months.   Foodies Festivals

I met some talented and inspirational chefs including Norman Musa. The UK’s leading Malaysian food expert. Chef Norman Musa   I am very inspired by his recipes, charm and work ethic. In fact I will be making his chicken satay today!

For vegetarian delights I was also impressed with Master Chef contestant founder of  The Hungry Gecko Jackie Kearney.  Jackie showed us how to make the street food Momo dumplings. So fresh and packed with flavour. I will be trying my own prawn version of these very soon and I will make sure I document the results before they are eaten!

Meeting Glynn Purnell, Chef, author, restaurant owner and regular TV personality was a highlight. He is very entertaining and great fun. His food is a delight and if you are ever in Birmingham I can recommend his restaurant. Gylnn Purnell

Food and entertainment!

Food and entertainment!

Other Chefs demoing in the Chef Theatre included winner of ITV’s  Food Glorious Food Rahalia Hussain.  Rahalia’s winning Korma recipe I can vouch that the dish is worthy of an award!

Ex Corrie star and now award wining Cheese maker Seam Williamson was the compare when I was demeaning my Harrisa Chicken, flat bread and chilli hummus recipes. The cheese he produces is stunning and what a lovely chap he is! Sean Wilsons award winning cheese


The delightful and award winning cheese maker Sean Wilson

delightful and award winning cheese maker Sean Wilson

Other hightails for me were watching these chefs create wonderful dishes

Impressive Andrew Parker,  Head chef at Georges bar and grill

Brilliantly talented Ross Bootland from @RossBootland De Vere hotel Head Chef Ross Bootland


Seabass cooked to perfection

Seabass cooked to perfection


Foe super healthy nutrient packed food. Gina is the perfect cook. Health by Gina