Friday, 29 June 2012

Gooseberry and Ginger Compote

I thought it would be a good idea, I thought I was doing the right thing and not being wasteful, I thought it would a lovely surprise.... I can not cook, I am not a domestic goddess but I am truthful and so here goes...

Carrie's Gooseberry and Ginger Compote.
Loads of gooseberries
Some ginger in syrup
A liberal sprinkling of granulated sugar
No shame.

I don't think there are many occasions in this world were a recipe comes with a disclaimer, well in this case I am breaking the mould - following this recipe could make you sad and feel like you have wasted an afternoon. There, you have been forewarned...
Originally the recipe came from a good place but then I didn't quite have the right ingredients or the right frame of mind or patience or natural ability.

To begin with I had these gooseberries, which I have already shown you when I plucked them fresh from the lottie bushes. Well here is that photo again and a much more down to earth one...

I took these promising little babes and washed them, topped and tailed them and put them all snug in a bowl together. Me, using a knife is a miracle in itself, I must say I was nervous but I had classical music on and it became really rather meditative. I was listening to the fantastic Camille Saint-Saens and the best piece of music in the world 'The Swan' from 'Carnival of the Animals'. You may not agree that this is the most fabulous piece of music out there, but I can't help you if you're wrong....

Then I chopped up the ginger (definitely not fine enough, though that is a macro photo!). Now if you have looked at the highlighted recipe above you will see that it required 'crystallised ginger', well I couldn't blasted well get hold of any so I was using Ginger in Syrup and it wasn't the same thing at all but I fought on gallantly.

So you add all this into a saucepan and plonk some sugar in (to taste - I added more later on) and just about nearly cover it with water.
Let it bubble and simmer for 10 mins (At this stage it's super burny hot so be careful, don't go saying I didn't warn you! If you decide to be an eejit I would recommend having an ambulance and a trusted plastic surgeon; preferably one whom you went to school with and who will help you out for free, on standby) then turn the heat down. Or it will burn (don't ask me how I know that, I just do!)

Then you are meant to let it gently simmer away until it is reduced by roughly half. My Nana always put a dollop on a dish and then ran her finger through it, if it staid parted by that finger furrow it was almost done. This did happen with mine but it still wasn't getting to the magical finger furrow AND wrinkle stage and I got bored and smelt burning......

So then off the heat and into jars to cool down and set more (or not) and there you have it Jam Compote!

Andrew tried some and his face was a picture. First of all he got a big chunk of ginger in his mouth which he wasn't expecting and then it wasn't sweet enough and he stuck out his tongue and there was some mild coughing...he took a drink and ate some crisps and that fixed it...

So Yay me! I'll not be doing that again in a hurry; or if I do I may follow the recipe.

Good night xxx


  1. Great read! The eejit part made lol! Those gooseberries look delish - shame it didn't go well; a friend made me some gooseberry and elderflower jam - very tasty indeed... Keep up the good work :)

  2. Thank you Matt - welcome to the blog by the way :) I tried and darn it I shall try again, I'm that sort of person. Plus the 2 big jars that came out of today's effort shall be eaten!! lol x

  3. I'm a 'bung it in ' kinda girl carrie. I'd do exactly what you did, throw in what i could get my hands on, and worry about the results afterwards. try making gooseberry jam/ sauce with elderflower cordial thrown in, v. tasty. Also i have an ice-cream recipe uses gooseberries and has a gooseberry sauce. it's so easy, a v. gorgeous. xx

  4. Just thinking about the sweetness - the gooseberries don't look fully ripe to me. Did you taste one before picking as they should be sweet and not too hard to the 'squeeze'? To be honest even without sugar a ripe gooseberry shouldn't be tart! So maybe it wasn't your cooking at fault!

  5. Suzie - the next batch is going to be exactly that ~ gooseberry and elderflower :) Great minds think alike xx Welcome to my humble blog xxx

    Sue - oh lordy there was just so much wrong with the whole thing. No they weren't ripe, I didn't use enough sugar by far etc. Next time I shall conquer! xx

  6. So you only did one thing wrong by picking them under-ripe as ripe they would have been sweet enough.

    If the actual recipe stated a liberal sprinkling of sugar - that wasn't exactly helpful whatever does that mean? Different things to different people.

  7. I'll give it a miss thanks as I'm not keen on gooseberries or ginger! Flighty xx

  8. Heehee! Sorry. I don't like goosegogs so it would have been yeuchto me anyway :)
    At least you tried, and it hasn't defeated you x

  9. Mo and Steve - I don't really like goosegogs either, hahaha. But we grow them so I didn't want to waste them, I guess that's maybe why my compote is so gingery *blush* BUT I did have some today on my cereal and I didn't die :)

  10. compote on cereal sounds good. I don't like icky sweet. But I do wimp out, and buy mine ready made!

  11. LoL!...It never hurts to try Practice makes perfect.


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