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I have never made ‘curd’ before, but my sister made lemon curd last year that was delicious, and while making the gooseberry jam the other day found a note for this recipe in my ‘River Cottage Preserves’ book. It is actually a recipe for Bramley lemon curd, but a note at the bottom suggests replacing the apples with gooseberries.
So I took 450g of Papa Peacock’s gooseberries (topped and tailed) and the zest of 2 unwaxed lemons and steamed these in the microwave (8 mins), then smushed the fruit through a sieve to make a smooth purée. I put this in a metal bowl over a pan of simmering water and added 125g of butter and 450g of sugar and the juice of the lemons and melted the butter. Then slowly poured in 4 large beaten eggs, whisking them in with a balloon whisk. Then I turned up the heat and cooked the mixture for 10 mins, my jam thermometer confirmed it had all reached 82 degrees c. Then when all smooth, glossy and creamy, I poured it into sterilised jars.
I have to say it is a bit of a faff, balancing the bowl on the saucepan with the thermometer and whisk threatening to tip the hot curd all over the hob, but absolutely worth the bother the curd is yummy scrummy, like the filling in a posh french ‘tarte au citron’, with an added fruity gooseberry fragrance. The book says it will last 4 weeks – yeah right!

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Smooth Gooseberry Jam

July 4, 2012

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Papa Peacock’s allotment provided us with a super huge bag of gorgeous big juicy gooseberries at the weekend. So I got out the jam pan (I don’t have a jam pan, I use my stock pot!).
My girls are incredibly picky and refuse any jam with ‘bits’ in it, and as these gooseberries had a few big black seeds in them I decided to go through all the faff of removing them from the mix before getting the jam anywhere near the breakfast table! I have been known to heat up bitsy jam and pop it through a sieve to make it kid friendly!
I prepared 1kg of gooseberries, snipping the top and tail off them with a pair of scissors, then I washed and steamed them in the microwave, (they took 10mins on full power in my 800w). Then I blitzed the fruit with my hand blender, and pushed the pulp through a sieve to get a smooth purée, no skin or seeds. I put this into my stock pot/jam pan and added 1kg of granulated sugar. Brought it all up to a bubbly boil and kept it there for 10 mins. Then when a bit cooler I popped it into sterilised jars.
It’s pretty yummy, and even though the pulp was a snotty green colour, the jam is a lovely peachy, orange colour. And my girls are eating it!