Gooseberry Fool

Tom Parker Bowles presents a traditional British summer dessert of fruit smothered in rich vanilla custard and cream
By Tom Parker Bowles
Gooseberry Fool
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Effort: easy


  • 450 g gooseberries
  • 150 ml elderflower cordial
  • 150 ml milk
  • 1 vanilla pod, split
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 tsp arrowroot
  • 30 g sugar
  • 150 ml double cream, whipped
  • brandy snap, to serve


1. Top and tail the gooseberries and put them in a saucepan with the elderflower cordial. Bring to the boil and then simmer gently until soft and pulpy - about 30 minutes. Leave to cool before transferring to a serving dish.

2. Heat the milk in a saucepan with the vanilla pod until almost at the boil.

3. Beat the egg yolks, arrowroot and sugar together in a bowl and pour the hot milk in, mix well and return the mixture to the pan. Remove the vanilla pod and heat the custard gently until it thickens, taking care not to boil it. Pour into a clean bowl and leave to cool.

4. When the custard is completely cool, pour it over the gooseberries and stir in the whipped cream. Divide between individual bowls and serve with brandy snap biscuits.

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