Our purple gooseberries are quite tart and strong-tasting this year, so I’m thinking they’ll make a particularly wonderful and flavourful gooseberry liqueur. However, as I obviously needed to bake something too, I figured their tart side might fare well in a recipe that originally calls for rhubarb. So, I took the rhubarb dream bar recipe and ran with it! (How boring am I?! It’s the previous post, for Pete’s sake!) I defend myself by saying that these are really good. Really.
I used a potato masher to break the berries for the filling – chopping them would be ideal (less juice!), but I was altogether too lazy to chop up 750 ml of gooseberries, having already topped’n'tailed the whole lot. I think chopping the berries will translate to a “drier” filling which might consequently bake a little faster- when I get around trying it, I will let you know what happens.
Very Gooseberry Squares
225 ml all-purpose flour
75 ml powdered sugar
80 g butter
250 ml caster sugar
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
a pinch of salt
750 ml gooseberries
If you want to use chopped gooseberries, start by chopping ‘em up.
Preheat oven to 175 C.
Line a 23 cm (9”) square pan with foil and grease.
In food processor or using a hand mixer, mix together the crust ingredients.
Press mixture into the prepared pan.
Bake crust for 10 minutes.
Prepare filling: Beat together the eggs, sugar, flour, baking powder, vanilla and salt. Fold in chopped gooseberries – or add whole gooseberries in the batter and mush them up a little with either a potato masher (making sure you don’t make jam – just break each berry a little) or your hands (messy but you have more control).
Spread filling mixture on the hot crust. Return the cake to oven and continue to bake until done and golden on top, about 50 minutes.