Today in the UK it is Yorkshire Pudding Day. I only discovered this yesterday and, given that we live in Yorkshire and a few of you asked for my (well, John's) Yorkshire pudding recipe, I couldn't let this day go unmarked, or unblogged.
We actually ate Toad in the Hole, which is sausages cooked in Yorkshire pudding batter in the oven, and very tasty it was too. I have no idea where the name for that dish comes from. When I told Bella what we were having for tea she looked very worried. I think she thought I'd gone mad and just made up a silly name. We ate it with Colcannon which is a very delicious Irish dish made from mashed potatoes mixed with greens (we used curly kale) and lots of butter. I used Sue's recipe and it was a great success with John and I, but not with the children who used their special radar which tells them to distrust anything green which is not a pea.
The mixture, or batter, consists of eggs, flour and milk. It is essentially a pancake batter of sorts. People get very superstitious about their recipes and methods round here and will only use certain pans, that sort of thing. John still maintains that his Grandad Ted, who was Yorkshire born and bred, made the best ones ever and he's never tasted one so good. Grandad Ted used a particular pan which was ONLY to be used for the Yorkshire puddings and nothing else, and it was not washed up after use but carefully wiped and stored away. Also, traditionally the Yorkshire pudding was eaten first, with some gravy made from the juices of the roast meat, before the main meal of the meat, potatoes and vegetables. This was a good way to make the expensive part of the meal, the meat, stretch further.
To get your Yorkshire puddings to rise well you need to do two things - leave the batter to rest before you cook it, and make sure the oil is very, very hot.
4oz/120g plain flour
½ pint/275ml milk
pinch of salt
- Mix the eggs and flour together in a bowl with a balloon whisk or in a food mixer.
- Add the milk and salt and mix well.
- Leave to stand for half an hour at least before you want to use it.
- Pre-heat your oven to about 220°C or 430°F (very hot!).
- You can make lots of little Yorkshire Puddings in a muffin tray, or one big one in a roasting tray. Chose your dish and pour some vegetable oil into the bottom - enough to give it a good, even covering.
- Put the dish into your hot oven and wait for the oil to heat. About ten minutes should do it.
- Take out the dish and very carefully pour in the batter. It will splatter. That is good.
- Put back in the oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes. 20 minutes will give you a crispy top and a fluffy inside, 30 minutes will give you a darker colour and altogether crunchier pudding. It's up to you.
You can also eat Yorkshire puddings as a dessert, with whipped cream and golden syrup. I've never done this but it does sound rather good.
Toad in the Hole
You need simply some nice, good quality sausages, a jug full of Yorkshire pudding batter and a couple of tablespoons of vegetable oil. Brown your sausages in the oil for five minutes in a pan which can be used on the hob and in the oven.
See how the batter sizzles and bubbles in the oil? That's what you want.
Bake for around 30 minutes in a hot oven, 220°C or 430°F.
Cut into big slabs and eat with gravy and whatever else takes your fancy. Hearty, stodgy, wonderful, winter food.
Sorry about the rubbish photos - electric light, kitchen chaos and hungry children got in the way.