Gooseberry gems

Gooseberry gems

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(4 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 20 mins Ready in 30 mins plus cooling

Skill level



Makes 12

Gooseberries are often overlooked, but it’s just a matter of knowing how to cook them and how to dress them up

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Without fool
  • Easily halved
  • Vegetarian
Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

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  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 200g golden caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 150g pot natural yogurt
  • 4 tbsp elderflower cordial (we used Bottlegreen)
  • 175g butter, melted and cooled

For the fool

  • 330g gooseberries, topped and tailed, or use frozen
  • 50g golden caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp elderflower cordial
  • 200g crème fraîche
  • icing sugar, for dusting

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  1. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Put 12 muffin cases into a muffin tray. Mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Beat the eggs, yogurt, elderflower cordial and melted butter together with a pinch of salt, then stir into the dry ingredients. Spoon into the cases (they will be quite full), bake for 18-20 mins until risen and golden, then cool on a wire rack.
  2. Meanwhile, put the gooseberries and the sugar into a frying pan, then gently cook for 10 mins until most of the berries have collapsed, but there’s still some texture. Taste for sweetness (add more sugar if you like, but remember that the cakes are sweet), then stir in the elderflower cordial and allow to cool. Once cool, fold into the crème fraîche.
  3. To serve, cut a section out of the top of each cake using a small, serrated knife - heart shapes look sweet, but if that’s too fiddly simply cut off the top and cut in half, like a butterfly cake. Spoon a dessertspoonful or so of the fool into each cake, top with the piece that you cut away, then dust with a little icing sugar.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, July 2008

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Show comments
browan713's picture
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really nice recipe! loved the tartness of the gooseberries and the muffins were really light and fluffy and held a good shape. i also needed to drain the gooseberries and used the juice which had drained off watered down as ice lollies. i have used the muffin recipe for lots of other occasions adding strawberries and cream. delicious. really tasty recipe!

kassis's picture

Just made these cakes, the muffin cases were quite full as it says in the recipe and a couple of them overflowed into the oven. It didn't spoil them too much as the lid had to be cut of anyway. The filling I made with marscapone because that's what I had in the fridge and reading the other comments I drained off the juices first and they turned out excellent!

reeney's picture

I made these gluten free with Doves Farm Self Raising Gluten Free Flour. The cakes worked very well (melting the butter is always good with GF baking I find). I didn't have quite enough gooseberries according to the recipe as I simply had what was in my veg box but the fool still worked well. Owing to a badly timed phone call I didn't drain the juice from the berries before adding the creme fraiche and having reduced the sugar as berry quantity lower it was too runny. I simply drained the whole mixture which left me a thick enough fool to use. Yum, yum yum in the sun.

jimnkatie's picture
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This also makes a great Victoria Sponge style cake. Bake the sponge in a 24cm tin then slice in half and fill with a sourcream/creamcheese filling and the gooseberries (drained of their juice). Dust the top with icing sugar:

Some pictures here:

The syrup drained off the Gooseberries makes a good cordial.

jimnkatie's picture
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Very yummy and popular with the neighbours. Despite straining off a lot of juice the cream was far too runny though, perhaps beacuse I was using red gooseberries? Will try the mascapone suggestion next time.

lilyofthevalley's picture

Appreciate all the comments and I look forward to baking these little gems. However, would it be possible when stating oven settings to also include which oven shelf should be used?

kirstienic's picture
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Really yummy and helped use some of my gooseberry glut this year! Even my husband liked them and he's not a gooseberry fan. Definitely agree with draining off the juice before adding the creme fraiche - I also had to strain mine the first time. If you do want a firmer filling, marscapone also works very well (the gooseberry mixture was sweet enough that it didn't need any extra sugar added).

catreynolds's picture

They look wonderful - what can I substitute for the elderflower cordial? I don't think it's available in our area of Quebec! Thanks.

greensister's picture

I usually have a disaster with muffins but these were fab! Made them when my sister stayed recently- they were just as good without the filling straight from the oven.

Good to find a recipe using diferent fruits, especially as they are a family favourite.

janbomyers's picture

Delicious! I made them with small cake cases and cooked them for less time. Also very popular with the children without the fruit bit!

sprocket's picture
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Fantastic buns that turned out perfectly. The sweet buns were a perfect contrast to the tart gooseberry filling. Ummm.... Only minor thing to watch is when adding the gooseberry to the creme fraiche be careful not to add or the juice or it ends up a soggy mess, I had to strain them.