I have been a bad blogger lately. Well, I haven't been a blogger lately is more like it. I have been baking a lot, but my son has been on vacation for the last 3 weeks or so, which means I haven't been on vacation for the last 3 weeks. And even though I have been baking during his nap time, when he was finally tucked in, I was so indescribably tired that whenever I tried writing anything it was incoherent babble.
But no longer! I baked today and now I am writing the recipe down for you, if anyone is still reading this. Hopefully I will manage to do it somewhat coherently.
This summer is my first one of owning a garden. I have always considered myself very "urban" and not "the gardening type"... And then we bought a summerhouse with a garden and all of a sudden I am spending money on fruit trees and bushes and strawberry plants and running around pruning and watering and I haven't had clean nails for 3 months. So far I have yellow, red and purple raspberries (and a black one coming, I can't wait for a pitch black raspberry tart..), black currants, blueberries (getting pink as well), a Japanese wineberry, lots of gooseberries and strawberries. Next spring I will add white and pink red currants for a completely psychedelic fruit tart. Black, and purple raspberries, white and pink red currants, pink and blue blueberries. It will be my edible homage to Prince.
In the mean time first year's worth of crops was mostly gooseberries, which I love. They slightly hairy and weird looking little berries, but the flavour is second to none. Juicy, tangy-sweet, floral and just utterly delicious.
I made myself a tiny little gooseberry pie using leftover pie dough, but I will give you the recipe for a large pie to share instead. It is always more fun to share pie with others (except the leftovers). I served the pie with beach rose ice cream, but since the season for beach roses has come and gone, you can either serve with a rose water ice cream or maybe a really good vanilla ice cream.
I have some dried woodruff in my spice cabinet, but if you can't find it vanilla or tonka bean scented sugar will be just wonderful, too.
Gooseberry pie with cinnamon and woodruff sugar
1 portion of Stella Parks Old-fashioned flaky pie dough (I have tried making one that is better, haven't succeeded yet. It is perfection), prepared as for a double crusted pie. I did a cutout design using a small cookie cutter, but you can do a lattice top or any top you like. Just prepare it in advance and chill it, it makes getting it on top of the pie so much easier.
750g gooseberries, fresh or frozen
40g corn starch
1 tsp. cinnamon
Juice of 1 small lemon
1 egg + a little whole milk or cream for egg wash
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar mixed with 1,5 tsp. dried, ground woodruff (or vanilla sugar)
Combine the gooseberries with the sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon and lemon juice in a large bowl. Pour the filling into the prepared pie crust, remember to scrape out the bowl to get all the sugar mixture into the pie shell. Arrange the remaining dough on top of the pie in the pattern you want. Refrigerate for 20-30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200C and when ready to bake brush with the egg wash and sprinkle the woodruff sugar over the pie.
Bake until the crust is golden brown and crisp and the filling is bubbling, about 50-60 minutes. Leave to cool to room temperature, then serve with a big scoop of ice cream!