Where has this week gone? I seemed to have missed out a few days this week and now I am playing catch up. There is so much to do and just not enough hours in the day for me. So my plans were to make a start on the gloss painting which I have yet to finish but as usual other things get in the way. Maybe next week??

A lovely neighbour of mine gave me some bags of frozen gooseberries which she didn’t want so I thought I would make a start and use some of them up. I spent some time looking at recipes to use the gooseberries in and yesterday I managed to bake a couple of standard recipes with a gooseberry twist. An Apple and Gooseberry Crumble (to use up some gooseberries) and an Apple & Cinnamon Scone Round (which used up the apples that were on the turn). Also, I repeated the Mini Gooseberry and Hazelnut Tarts which I baked last week. I am hoping to share the recipe for these tarts for you to have a try. Are you a lover or a hater of gooseberries? I don’t think gooseberries are a very popular fruit these days as they are a fairly tart fruit in my opinion, well the green ones are anyway, so they need to be added to sweet but quite subtle flavoured ingredients to enhance the flavour.

Gooseberries are packed full of vitamin C, phenols, fibre and antioxidants and a great fruit to include in your diet but you just need to be inventive as to how to do that. Definitely an acquired taste I think and one which I am working on as I am struggling with them too 🙂

Gooseberries when cooked take on a rhubarb texture but have no real flavour of their own I don’t think. The Apple and Gooseberry Crumble is a big hit especially with the husband who enjoyed some last night with evaporated milk. I did add a touch of cinnamon (instead of lemon) to the gooseberries when I defrosted them in a pan with a bit of sugar and water and it definitely made the gooseberries less sour than the last time I used gooseberries in my baking. Also, I added cinnamon to the crumble mix and it is a lovely delicate addition the the dish. The Apple & Cinnamon Scone Round I made with chopped apple as I like the look of the apple pieces in the scone when you eat it. A personal thing I know but you can always grate the apple before adding it to the scone mix. As for the Mini Gooseberry Tarts, I used a pastry base with a frangipane mixture as the filling but the frangipane contained chopped hazelnuts, as well as, ground almonds. I added the gooseberries to the top of the mix so that they sink in when baking in the oven. A dusting of icing sugar finished the tarts off. 🙂

Lots of gooseberries used in my bakes yesterday so I wonder if I will convert my children to eating another fruit – gooseberries ???? I will let you know how it goes 🙂

For the weekend, I have a busy Saturday planned as I am off to Manchester with my daughter for an offer day. A roadtrip for two which will be strange but quite nice at the same time. However, I have never been to Manchester before so I think I am slightly nervous about it all. I think Sunday will be a quiet day at home with maybe a walk thrown in at the most 🙂