Gooseberries. If I was to describe what my childhood tasted like in one word, I would say exactly that. I pretty much spent my entire summer holidays running around my grandmother’s garden, robbing her gooseberry shrubs of their succulent fruit.
July is peak gooseberry season, so I’ve decided to make some jam. I’ve been craving peanut butter and jam toast for what feels like forever but I tend to steer clear of shop-bought jams due to their high sugar content and all the other unnecessary additives. Seeing gooseberries in my local greengrocer made me have one of those lightbulb moments. I thought to myself: gooseberry jam would be the perfect match for a peanut butter toast.
Gooseberries vary in sweetness, sometimes they are super sweet, sometimes they are really sour. For my jam, I’ve used 400 grams of gooseberries and 2/3 cup of granulated sugar. The jam came out a little sour, which I like, but my berries were more on the tart side. So, the sugar to fruit ratio really depends on personal taste. I’d say once you add the sugar, wait for it to dissolve and taste the mixture. If you think it needs more sugar, add a little more until you’re happy with the sweetness.
Perfect on toast, crackers and stirred into yoghurts, this gooseberry jam is super simple, requiring just two ingredients (plus water), one pot and simple methods to make. Yes, it does take a while to make (30-40 minutes) but it is so totally worth it. You know exactly what goes into the jar and it tastes soooo good. Have you ever tasted something so delicious it sent you straight back to your childhood? Because this jam did just the thing for me.
How to test if the jam is ready?
You can test if your jam is ready by placing a small saucer or plate in the freezer for 5-10 minutes (it needs to be cold to touch). Once you boil the mixture and it starts to thicken up and you think it might be ready, spoon a little of the hot conserve onto the cold saucer and return to the freezer for 2 minutes. Take out of the freezer and run your finger through it. If it’s ready, it will wrinkle up. This means it is ready to take off the heat and pour into a jar. If this doesn’t happen, don’t worry! Just boil the mixture for another 5 minutes or so, and keep testing until it does!
Gooseberry Jam (2 ingredients)
- 400 g gooseberries, washed
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 200 ml water
- Place the gooseberries and 200ml of water in a large pan. Bring to the boil and simmer for around 10 minutes until the fruit is soft and pulpy.
- Add the sugar and stir over a gentle heat for another 10 minutes or until the sugar is completely dissolved.
- Once the sugar has dissolved, bring the mixture to the boil and boil for further 10 minutes, stirring constantly to make sure it does not burn. The mixture should start to thicken up as it cooks.
- Pour the mixture into a jar and seal. Keep in the fridge.