Chocolate Covered Gooseberries!

Have you ever tried a gooseberry? At first glance you might mistake it for a tomatillo, but removing the husk will reveal a small golden nugget. They have a very unique flavor unlike anything I’ve tried before. My boyfriend, who had discovered them in Italy, introduced me to this wonderful fruit. For years he thought he had eaten cherry tomatoes, until one night when he was reading through a gardening magazine. He got this funny look on his face as though a light bulb had just gone off and then came the excitement. “All this time” he said. We mail-ordered the seeds from a special heirloom seed company and to our delight the plants grew easily in our climate. The harvests were abundant, so I decided to surprise him with the delicacy that had prompted the purchase in the first place. They were even more delicious than I had imagined!

Chocolate Dipped Gooseberries

Chocolate Dipped Gooseberries

 

1 pint fresh gooseberries (you can sometimes find them at Whole Foods Market)

¼ lb 70% Valrhona Chocolate (I purchased the discs as opposed to a bar to make the melting process easy.)

 

Line a baking sheet or jelly roll pan with parchment paper.

Melt chocolate over a double boiler. While the chocolate is melting, work with the gooseberries by peeling back the husk of each one. Do not remove the husk however, because they make an excellent handle to grab while transporting the tasty morsels into one’s mouth.

One by one, grab the gooseberries by the husk and gently dip into the chocolate, rolling as necessary to cover the entire fruit. Return to the cookie sheet and repeat, until all of the gooseberries have been coated in chocolate.

Place sheet with gooseberries in refrigerator and allow chocolate to set (about 20 min.)

Gooseberry Husks

Apricot & Blackberry Crisp

What to do with the 2 lbs of Blackberries I harvested from the garden this morning? Make a crisp, of course! This is a great dessert, but also makes a nice breakfast. You can eat it warm from the oven or cold from the fridge.

Apricot & Blackberry Crisp

Apricot Berry Crisp

(Gluten & Dairy Free, No Sugar Added)

1-2 cups pitted sliced apricots (skin on)

5-6 cups fresh blackberries (you should have a total of 6 or 7 cups of fruit.)

1 teaspoon dry stevia, divided
1 ½  cup gluten free quick cook oats

2 tsp cornstarch
¾  cup gluten free flour (I used Pamela’s gluten & dairy free all purpose.)
½  cup almonds, roughly chopped
½ cup melted coconut oil
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a 8-inch square baking dish with either coconut oil or dairy free butter (I used Earth Balance spread.)

Spread the chopped almonds onto a jellyroll pan and toast 5-7 min or so. (Shake pan gently every 2-3 minutes so as not to burn.) Remove from oven and let cool.

In a medium bowl gently mix together apricots, berries, cornstarch and ½ teaspoon stevia. Pour into prepared baking dish.

In another medium bowl stir together oats, flour, almonds, remaining ½ teaspoon of stevia and coconut oil.

Sprinkle oat mixture over the fruit. Bake for 1 hour or until fruit is bubbling and topping is golden brown.

Let cool 5 minutes and enjoy!

* Stevia is very sweet so be careful not to add too much. Taste your fruit before adding, and if the fruit seems sweet enough by itself you may choose to omit this or use less.