When summer arrives in the UK (and as the season develops into autumn), a whole host of gorgeous fruit comes into its own. From popular summer staples like strawberries and raspberries to lesser-known gems like loganberries and gooseberries – there really is an abundance of British fruit to try.
So grab a punnet of your favourite berries, currants, plums, or cherries and get cooking!
A classic British fruit – strawberries are a true taste of summertime. They’re super-versatile and work as well in savoury dishes as they do served simply with cold, fresh cream. Try them with lashings of Pimm’s in a gorgeous baked cobbler or whack them in a cocktail shaker for a chilled strawberry martini – bliss!
These delicate, soft berries are the basis of many classic desserts, including summer pudding and pavlova. They can be tart, but will sweeten later in the season and are really at their best from July to early September. Try them on toast with chocolate, avocado and banana for a mega snack you’ll make again and again.
Picked straight from the bush, currants are quite tart, but toss them with a little sugar and they’re good to go – use your black, white or redcurrants in jams, syrups and cordials for a stunning treat. Or infuse gin and vodka with currants and (after a couple of months in a cool, dark place) you’ll have the ultimate Christmas stocking filler.
| More: How to make jam
Beautiful blueberries are always such a joy when added to muffins or pancakes, and their intense sweetness can work wonders in other dishes, too. Try them in Jamie’s refreshing summer punch or take your breakfast game to another level with some super-easy blueberry breakfast doughnuts.
We love these green (sometimes pink!) beauties but, unless you grow your own, you need to keep your eyes peeled to find them fresh in the shops, as only a handful of farms grow them in the UK today. They’re absolutely perfect for old school classics like gooseberry fool or rainbow jam tarts. Pair them with their seasonal spouse, elderflower, for an irresistibly sticky jam.
Thought to have originated in California, this dark red berry is a firm favourite in British kitchens and gardens from late July to September. A cross between a blackberry and a raspberry, they have a delicate flavour that’s bang in the middle of sweet and sour. Get a jar of loganberry jam on the go to enjoy them into autumn, or try them in place of raspberries in this refreshing cocktail.
Grab fresh cherries as soon as you see them in your supermarket or greengrocer and knock-up a classic cherry pie – perfect served with lightly whipped cream. Fancy something cooler? Check out our recipe for a vegan coconut & cherry ice cream.
| More: 3 ways to de-stone a cherry
By mid-August, hedgerows and supermarket shelves should be fit to burst with beautiful blackberries. Partner a punnet of blackberries with sweet shortcrust pastry for the ultimate apple pie, or enjoy them with cream and yoghurt in a refreshing blackberry fool – super easy and so fast to make.
These little stone fruits start appearing toward the end of summer. Just like plums, ripe greengages are sweet and succulent with a gorgeous honey flavour. Use them in sweet pies and crumbles, or try them in a chutney with warm spices like nutmeg and cinnamon. They’re full of pectin, too, so are perfect for jam making!
For more seasonal inspiration, read our guide on what to eat in July.