Hooray!  The gooseberries are back on track after a few dismal years.  Celebrate with this classic British pudding dating from the 15th century

Serves 4




500g gooseberries

100g caster sugar

2 strips pared lemon zest

3 tbsp elderflower cordial, or to taste

142ml pot double cream

150ml freshly made custard




  1. Put the gooseberries into a saucepan (there is no need to top and tail them) with the sugar and the lemon zest. Cook over a low heat until the juices start to run from the gooseberries, then cover and cook for 5 minutes or until the berries are soft.  Discard the lemon zest. Turn the heat up a little and cook for 4-5 minutes to reduce the liquid a little.  Remove from the heat and leave to go cold.
  2. Blitz the gooseberries with a blender.  Rub the puree through a sieve into a large mixing bowl and stir in the elderflower cordial, to taste.
  3. In another bowl, whip the cream until it just starts to form soft peaks. Carefully fold the custard into the gooseberry purée, followed by the cream.  Spoon into 4 serving glasses and chill for at least 1 hour before serving.  Serve with Primrose Vale’s shortbread.