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Effing gooseberries

Now the harvest. I hate picking fruit. I come from a long line of people who got other people to pick their fruit, by force if necessary. I guess this is karma.

Some things have done very well this year, despite drought (the raspberries). Some, just okay (respectable yield on the red gooseberries, but they’re awfully small). We’re just beginning, but it’s an early beginning.

They began harvesting the hay on the 30th of June this year – the earliest on record.

Gooseberries are a bit of a hate object. Sour as a bastard, nasty thorns, and you gotta ‘top and tail’ them before they go in the freezer.

Uncle B did that last bit. Troo luv.


Comment from Ric Fan
Time: July 5, 2018, 9:57 pm

If you hate them, why grow them? Why not grow something respectable and fun like cherries?


Comment from Deborah HH
Time: July 5, 2018, 10:33 pm

How will you serve the gooseberries?
I’ve picked my fair share of wild red plums, but never gooseberries. The hardest part about picking the plums is being on constant alert for rattlesnakes, which like to hunt for small critters what like to feast on fallen plums. Damn, I hate snakes.

Comment from DurnedYankee
Time: July 6, 2018, 12:04 am

What about the Snozberries? Do they taste like snozberries?

Comment from Ric Fan
Time: July 6, 2018, 12:13 am

I imagine everytime that Uncle B “topped and tailed” a berry, he pinched stoaty’s butt and yelled “Goose!”

Comment from drew458
Time: July 6, 2018, 2:44 am

The hay is coming in here too in western NJ. There are giant stacks of bales in the fields, whole armies of hay rolls too, and those totally overloaded rickety old farm trucks are out and about, loaded 16 feet high with the stuff.

I don’t know what anybody does with it, but it smells really nice after they mow the field. Sure, hay is for horses … but wouldn’t they be better off with the stuff when it’s green and fresh?

Comment from BJM
Time: July 6, 2018, 3:11 am

I hateses dealing with gooseberries too…so I make jam by ladling the stewed berries into a china cap and press with a big ole spoon. Viola! no topping and tailing. The jam is delish on sourdough waffles and/or scones…especially in the dead of winter.

[btw- what we ‘Mericans call jelly Brits call jam and what we call jam they call preserves or conserves.]

After three years of futzing with the damned things… I finally got a good crop of Boysenberries..picked a boat load today I did.

Pie tomorrow.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: July 6, 2018, 11:37 am

Gooseberries have a lot of uses but my favourite is a crumble -nothing beats a gooseberry crumble. Well, except maybe rhubarb.

What Her Stoatliness didn’t mention is that this evening’s chore is to pick about six ton of red currants. For some reason we’ve had bumper crops of these for the past two years. Anyone got any tasty recipes…?

Comment from Durnedyankee
Time: July 6, 2018, 11:50 am

Tell me, do they DO strawberry rhubarb pie in the UK?

Comment from Mrs. Peel
Time: July 6, 2018, 2:47 pm

True love is gassing up your spouse’s car when you drive it.

Comment from Deborah HH
Time: July 6, 2018, 6:31 pm

Muffins. I’d bake red current muffins 🙂

Comment from Timbotoo
Time: July 7, 2018, 12:50 pm

Just the phrase “top and tail” took me back to summer holidays spent with my grandparents.
Gooseberry crumble, stewed gooseberries with custard, and a slice of heaven: gooseberry and cherry pie!

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