There are few more lovely things about the summer than the fruits that the season brings and the gorgeous puddings they lend themselves to. Gooseberries are wonderful - they have sweetness which comes with a sharp edge so, although there are recipes which use them raw, I think a little cooking brings out their character best in this classic, and very easy, dish.
The “foole”has been around for a while - it’s first mentioned as a dessert in Tudor times. Custard was originally the base for the dish but the richness of cream and the lush texture of Greek yoghurt make them perfect for this confection.
Gooseberries come with a little stalk at one end and a withered blossom at the other - their tops and tails. You need to remove these from your fruit. And if you’re not a gooseberry fan substitute raspberries - they work equally well, as do several other soft fruits.
So pour yourself a drink, put some on some music and prepare to have some fun.
250g gooseberries, washed, topped and tailed
200g Greek yogurt - use the full fat stuff - it works best
200ml double or heavy cream
3 tbsp caster sugar
1-2 tbsp icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
How to make your Fool
Put the caster sugar and gooseberries in a heavy pan with 2 tablespoons of water.
Gently bring to a simmer. When the fruit starts to burst open remove the pan from the heat.
With a fork mash the gooseberries until you have a pulp. Transfer to a bowl and then chill in the fridge for about 20 minutes or until cold.
Using a hand or electric whisk, gently beat together the yoghurt, icing sugar and vanilla in bowl until smooth. Then add the cream and continue to whisk. The mixture will begin to thicken.
Place the gooseberry pulp on the thick, creamy mixture and, with a small spoon or a skewer, run the fruit through the mix. Don’t overdo it - you want to create a swirl, rather than mix everything together completely. Decant into glasses and serve.
Josie Beszant and/or Ian Scott Massie, both artists from Masham North Yorkshire, Uk.