Gooseberry fool

5 spectacular gooseberry recipes for summer

by Great British Chefs 12 June 2018

When these tart little berries come into season, grab as many as you can find – they’re a real treat and a sure sign summer is in full swing. Here are some of our favourite ways to cook with them.

Great British Chefs is a team of passionate food lovers dedicated to bringing you the latest food stories, news and reviews.

Great British Chefs is a team of passionate food lovers dedicated to bringing you the latest food stories, news and reviews as well as access to some of Britain’s greatest chefs. Our posts cover everything we are excited about from the latest openings and hottest food trends to brilliant new producers and exclusive chef interviews.

Gooseberries are never going to win any beauty contents, but in terms of flavour they’re hard to beat. When raw they’re almost inedible because of their intensely fierce tartness, but add a little bit of sugar and heat and they mellow out to become pleasingly sharp. Being a very seasonal fruit, gooseberries are only available in the UK between June and August, and when they’re gone, they’re gone – so once they start appearing on shop shelves, be sure to snap some up.

Cooking gooseberries is incredibly simple and they’re a very forgiving fruit, often stewed down over a gentle heat with some sugar to create an indulgent filling for pies, tarts and crumbles. But they can also create wonderful sauces for savoury dishes. Take a look at our five favourite gooseberry recipes below and make the most of this seasonal treat.

Gooseberry crumble

Let’s start with a classic – a British crumble always brings a bit of joy to the dinner table, and filling it with gooseberries instead of apples turns it into a seasonal showstopper. This recipe from chef Dominic Chapman showcases gooseberries that are broken down and sweetened underneath a crumble enriched with almonds and hazelnuts – plus a homemade custard to boot.

Gooseberry pie

Crumble a little too rustic for your liking? Try a pie instead, complete with a beautiful pastry lattice lid. The gooseberries are joined by pieces of apple and a little elderflower cordial, which all combine together whilst in the oven. Serve with plenty of double cream, which combines with the juices released from the fruit.

Fermented gooseberries with mackerel

Gooseberries don’t just work for desserts – their tartness contrasts wonderfully with oily fish such as mackerel, as seen in this beautiful ceviche-style dish from Michael Bremner. The gooseberries are fermented in whey for a week, which amplifies their flavour and dulls their acidic tang, meaning they only need to be sliced up without cooking before serving.

Gooseberry fool

Gooseberry fool is a beloved dessert for a reason – it tastes fantastic and is incredible simple to make. A combination of stewed gooseberries and whipped cream, this recipe also includes some homemade shortbread biscuits on the side (although shop-bought will be absolutely fine if you’re short on time).

Gooseberry gin

Gooseberries might only be around for a few months, but if you simply can’t bear the thought of life without their sour sweetness then get a bottle of gin, pour it in a jar and add sugar with a few large handfuls of gooseberries. In a few months you’ll have an incredible tipple that encapsulates the British summertime even in the depths of winter.