Perfect Yorkshire Pudding
In Tidings’ September 2011 issue, columnist Joanne Will interviewed chef Elaine Lemm about the latter’s family tradition of making delicious Yorkshire Pudding. Meanwhile, Elaine has provided these three easy recipe for you to try for yourself!
There is no definitive recipe for making Yorkshire puddings – everyone it seems has their own and this is mine. It isn’t the method my mother showed me as she has the knack of making amazing puddings without measuring anything, but is one I have developed over the years to produce perfect puddings every time:
4 large, fresh eggs, measured in a jug
Equal quantity of milk to eggs
Equal quantity of plain flour to eggs
Pinch of salt
Lard, beef dripping or vegetable oil for cooking
Heat the oven to the highest temperature possible. However, do not exceed 230C/450F/Gas 8 or the fat may burn.
Pour the eggs and milk into a large mixing bowl and add the pinch of salt. Whisk thoroughly with an electric or hand whisk until foamy. Leave to stand for about 10 minutes to allow the bubbles to subside.
Sieve the flour into the milk and egg mixture and beat again using an electric hand beater or hand-whisk to create a lump free batter resembling thick cream. Finally pass the batter through a sieve into another bowl or jug.
Leave the batter to rest in the kitchen for a minimum of 30 minutes up to a couple of hours, the longer the better.
Place a pea-sized piece of lard, dripping or ½ tsp vegetable oil in a Yorkshire pudding tin (4 x 5cm/2″ hole tin) or 12-hole muffin tin and heat in the oven until the fat is smoking.
Give the batter another good whisk adding 2 tbsp of cold water and fill a third of each section of the tin with batter and return quickly to the oven.
Leave to cook until rise and golden brown, approx 20 minutes. Repeat the last step again without adding any water until all the batter is used up.
Toad in the Hole with Onion Gravy
Toad in the Hole turns Yorkshire Puddings into a filling meal with the addition of sausages. Just where the name Toad in the Hole comes from no-one really knows but originally the dish used spoonfuls of sausage meat, so the finished dish probably resembled toads peeping out of the batter?
The modern version uses a classic pork sausage but with so many great flavoured sausages available the versions of Toad in the Hole are endless.
Traditionally Toad in the Hole is made in a large square roasting tin which after cooking is sliced into hearty portions. Individual “Toads” can be made using a 12-hole muffin tin and cutting the sausage into thirds to fit each hole.
1 quantity of Yorkshire pudding batter (see recipe above)
1 tbsp vegetable oil
8 good quality, pork or flavoured sausages
1 quantity of Yorkshire pudding batter (see recipe above), rested for minimum of 30 mins
1 tbsp lard, beef dripping or vegetable oil, for cooking
Heat the oven to 245C/475F/Gas 9 or as hot as possible.
Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the sausages and cook for 10 minutes until browned all over. Remove from the heat and keep to one side.
Drop the lard/dripping or oil into a 30cm x 24cm deep roasting tin. Place in the oven and heat until the fat is smoking hot. Remove from the oven and evenly arrange the sausages in the hot fat, taking extra care as the fat may splutter. Return to the oven for 5 minutes.
Once more remove the roasting tin from the oven. Slowly and carefully pour the Yorkshire pudding batter into the hot fat and sausages, return to the oven and leave to cook until for 30 minutes or until the pudding is golden and risen. Serve with lashings of onion gravy (see recipe below) and fresh seasonal vegetables.
Onion Gravy Filled Yorkshire Pudding
The simplest, quickest and delicious filling for giant Yorkshire puddings is an onion gravy. For a more substantial dish, add a few chucks of leftover roast meat, and vegetables from Sunday lunch. Smother with thick, glossy onion gravy – lovely.
Onion gravy is also perfect to serve with Toad in the Hole.
1 quantity of Yorkshire pudding batter (see recipe above)
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp butter
2 medium onions, peeled and thinly sliced
½ tsp sugar
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
750ml beef stock
4 tsp corn starch/corn flour*
4 tsp cold water*
Salt and black pepper
Make the Yorkshire pudding batter according to the recipe and leave to rest for a minimum of 30 minutes to several hours.
Heat the oven to the highest temperature possible, however, do not exceed 230C/450F/Gas 8 or the fat may burn.
Place a pea-sized piece of lard, dripping or ½ tsp vegetable oil into 4 individual Yorkshire puddings, or 18cm Victoria sandwich tins and heat in the oven until the fat is smoking.
Give the batter another good whisk adding 2 tbsp of cold water and fill a third of the tin with batter and return quickly to the oven. Cook for 20 – 25 minutes or until the pudding is golden and risen.
Meanwhile, over a gentle heat, melt the oil and butter in a large saucepan. Add the onion and cover with a lid. Cook slowly for approx 10 minutes or until the onions are soft and translucent. Stir occasionally.
Add the sugar and balsamic vinegar to the onions and stir well. Cover with the lid and continue to cook for a further 5 minutes.
Add the stock and boil gently uncovered for 5 minutes.
In a heatproof jug or bowl mix the corn starch/flour with the cold water to a thin paste.* Pour a little of the hot gravy into the starch mixture and mix thoroughly. Pour the starch mixture back into the gravy, raise the heat to high and boil for 10 minutes or until the gravy is slightly thickened. Keep warm until ready to serve over the Yorkshire puddings once cooked.
*If you have leftover Yorkshire pudding batter use 2 tbsp to thicken the gravy. Pour a little of the hot gravy into the Yorkshire pudding batter, stir well then add back to the gravy, bring to the boil stirring constantly.