A couple of years ago, I ripped out the spiky bushes in our front yard and planted some berry bushes (pink currants, black currants (the real kind, not the little raisin they call a ‘currant’ in baking), and gooseberries, plus some raspberries in the back yard.
They sort of vegetated the first year, but this year started growing well, and all had enough berries on there to make it fun – and it will only getter better each year from now on!
Today I picked all the black currants and made currant sauce – it will be nice as a substitute for cranberry sauce. Kira had some over ice cream tonight.
The gooseberries aren’t quite there yet, and there aren’t enough for any big projects, but the first few were ripe for eating out of hand, and Kira pronounced them her favorite berry so far.
Pink currants are really tart, so I like to stick them in cakes. I’ve been making this recipe – the cake is really sweet, so it needs a very tart fruit or berry to taste good. It’s been a hit every time we’ve made it.
1/2 cup soft butter
1 1/2 c brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 c flour (I use one cup whole wheat, one cup regular unbleached)
1 tsp baking soda
1 c buttermilk (or substitute 1 cup milk and 1 tblsp lemon juice)
2 cups coarsely chopped fresh rhubarb (or other tart fruit like pink, black or red currants, gooseberries, huckleberries, or tart apples)
Mix wet ingredient, then add dry ingredients, mix until well blended, then gently fold in fruit. Spoon into greased 9 x 13 pan
In a separate bowl, mix:
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
Sprinkle evenly over batter.
Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until toothpick stuck in center comes out clean. This is great with real whipped cream.
It’s amazing how quick this cake disappears…