Oldbury Tarts

These little gooseberry tarts are famous all over Gloucestershire. Many local people maintain that the edges stand up better if the tarts are made the day before they are baked.


  • 2 lb (1 kg) gooseberries
  • 2 lb (1 kg) flour
  • 2 sticks (240 g) butter
  • 1 cup (240 g) lard
  • cups (120 g) demerara sugar


Top, tail and wipe the gooseberries. Put the flour into a bowl and make a well in the middle. Cut the butter and lard in small chunks and put into the well. Pour cup (1.5 dl) boiling water quickly over the fat, stir with a knife until it has melted and then pull the flour down into it, continuing to stir with the knife blade until the mixture forms a softish paste. Break off a small piece of the paste and roll out, on a floured pastry board, to about the size of a saucer. Repeat this process but this time roll out the pastry to about the size of the top of a cup. Continue in this way until all the pastry has been used up.

Turn up the edges of the larger pieces of pastry about 1 inch (2.5 cm) all round and cover the bottom of each with gooseberries. On to each put 2 teaspoons of demerara sugar and then a smaller piece of pastry, sealing it to the inner side of the tart, not over the top. Pinch the standing-up edge all round to flute it. Bake at 400°F (200°C, Gas Mark 6) for 20 minutes.