Kipper and I have been whizzing up and down the country between home and my parents’ house quite a lot recently. And almost every time we pass by the Catthorpe Interchange on the way, we stop in the Manor Farm shop and cafe in Catthorpe village. The farm shop sells all sorts of delicious, in-season, local vegetables and fruit, and this time we were lucky enough to get some freshly-picked juicy strawberries, and a punnet of delicious, ripe and fragrant gooseberries.
I love gooseberries – tangy, floral, sweet, scented and generally fabulous – but DH is less of a fan. I think it’s because he’s diabetic, and the sharp and tangy nature of the gooseberry tends to mean that you need a decent dose of sugar to make them tasty. On the plus side, it means I can make whatever I like with them, because he’s not going to eat them anyway.
This time, I decided to make some simple baked custard cups. I flavoured the creamy custards with elderflower, which is a classic pairing with gooseberry and brings out the fruit’s floral flavours. The custards were studded with whole gooseberries, which softened and released some juices into the custards, but held their shape during the baking.
I thought these were gorgeous – creamy, sweet, fragrant and fruity. My only regret was that I didn’t make them bigger! So far, every time I’ve had one, I’ve had to have a second straight after. Note to self: next time, use larger cups!
Kipper enjoyed the custard part but thought the gooseberries were “too sour”. I hope she’ll grow into them as she gets a bit older and her palate becomes more sophisticated.
Enjoy these simple to make gooseberry and elderflower custards while the gooseberries are in season – they’ll be over before you know it. Eat them in the garden for a real summer treat.
This made 8 little baked gooseberry custards, which is 4 servings 🙂
- 250g gooseberries
- 100ml single cream
- 1 egg
- 35g caster sugar
- 2 tsp elderflower cordial (neat)
- Preheat the oven to 180C.
- Top and tail the gooseberries and divide them between 8 silicon cupcake cases.
- Whisk the remaining ingredients together and pour over the gooseberries. The cups should be just over 3/4 full.
- Bake at 180C for 15-18 minutes until the custards are just set. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before eating.
It’s always lovely to cook with ingredients that come directly from the growers, so I’m also joining the Shop Local challenge, hosted by Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary, since these delicious gooseberries were grown (and bought) not too far away!