Peter Rabbit; Gooseberry Tarts

After losing them (his shoes), he ran on four legs and went faster, so that I think he might have got away altogether if he had not unfortunately run into a gooseberry net, and got caught by the large buttons on his jacket. It was a blue jacket with brass buttons, quite new.

-Peter Rabbit, Beatrix Potter

Peter Rabbit; Gooseberry Tarts

Christmas Day 2008-- my first day ever blogging. I had made this neat pirate box to hold a pirate themed gift for my sister Madi out of a brown cardboard box purchased from Ikea, some balsa wood, paint and two cool decorative hinges. I thought it was too cool to just keep to ourselves, so I started a blog. That pirate box, by the way, is still kicking around- the blog post meanwhile got lost along the way.

Being the creative sort, I started in a general sense with paper crafts and house decorations. It was also the day I got my first major ulcer that put me in bed for days.That same ulcer would send me for tests to diagnose myself as coeliac, which would later influence my blogging shift from crafts to gluten free cooking to Canadian cooking to fantasy food to food in literature. Ants in my pants it would seem.

That and the fact that crafting takes up space. And when you don't have space, it's kinda hard to do it. At all. Especially when your craftroom/study becomes a storage room when you don't expect it, until one day you go to walk in, and the room is so jampacked you can't get through the door. I think that day I just turned around and gave up blogging about crafting.

Anyways, back to the whole point of this ramble. I stumbled across photos from back in 2009 when I was crafting and came across the Easter/ Peter Cottontail themed projects I made that would work well with a Peter Rabbit theme now. Thought I'd share a peek back. It's like a snapshot of me at 21.

I've always thought of Peter Cottontail aka the Easter Bunny, as a pretty sophisticated guy. Looking back it was probably the beautifully scripted cards that were left for my sister and I and the perfection that went into making our Easter baskets each year. And so I guess it was only natural that we imagined him to wear a top hat and little silk vest as he delivered the baskets around.

-scribble from a 2009 blog post

A handdrawn building (complete with white picket fence) for Peter Cottontail's Workshop that held food dye as an egg dying kit.
Peter Cottontail's carrot garden.
Peter's top hat cupcake box.
Peter Cottontail's Cookie Kit.
Peter's garden that held packets of seeds
And an image of our 'carrot tree' that year. 

The posts are still around, but it seems I lost the text with the transition. Uploaded images but left the text behind. Oh well. Pictures say a thousand words, right?

Peter Rabbit and Peter Cottontail Easter theme recap from 2009

2009 Easter table

As for the gooseberry tarts, which we seem to have not talked about here. I'd never tried gooseberry before, never seen a fresh one and never really even heard of them. Fortunately if you live near an Ikea you're guaranteed to find a jar of gooseberry jam, under the name SYLT KRUSBĂ„R. Other than that, you'll need some plain flour, white sugar, salt, and cold butter.

Mix together with a food processor or a mixer

1 1/4 cups plain flour

1/4 cups white sugar

1/2 tsp salt


1/2 cup (1 stick) 110grams cold butter cut into chunks. Mix until it's all combined and looks like course crumbs. Roll out and cut to fit tart pans. The recipe called to bake in an oven of 425oF/220oC, but I lowered it to 160-170oC, and baked it for longer, until the crust was starting to have a hint of colour. If the dough puffs, simply pierce it with a fork. Before the crust goldens, spoon in the gooseberry jam and let bake until the tarts are goldeny brown. You don't have to bake the jam in the tart, you can just spoon it in when the tart is golden, but I like the jam to solidify a bit.

Crust recipe is from Joy of Cooking, 75th anniversary version