The Journey Continues to
For this country I chose two little dishes, Yorkshire Pudding and Pigs in a Blanket.
The journey to this country is special to me. Ever since I was a little girl and discovered a little sci-fi British show called Doctor Who (ok not so little), I have been drawn to our friends across the pond. It wouldn’t be until many years later that I would actually make friends and meet with some wonderful people from there via online and in person. One in particular helped me immensely in trying to decide what delicious foods I should discover from here. Liz has been a friend for several years. We met online and later I had the pleasure of meeting her in person (wave Liz). If it were not for her and another in particular (yes, you too Ali my friend, I would never forget you.) I would not have met my hubby and had some memorable times that I will always cherish. Those were indeed some of the best times. But that is another story of a group of wonderful people, that although we may not chat everyday, I still consider them as my life long friends.
As I said before I have been drawn to this country, the history, the people, the magnificent shows, and yes, as a child I would even try the accent.
I really hope that I did these two dishes justice. I hope Liz and the UK FoodTribers at my home away from home, FoodTribe, think so at least. So let’s begin with the first one…the one that when I looked through the oven door and saw that those little golden delights had poofed up (not sure if that’s the correct term but hey, it was a proud moment) I did let out a joyous yell.
I will confess, for the longest time I thought Yorkshire pudding was…well…a pudding. It wasn’t until I started watching British cooking shows that I found out it is pretty similar to popovers. Yorkshire puddings are commonly a side dish made from a batter of eggs, flour, milk or water and cooked in a bit of oil or beef fat. The first ever recipe for this was in a book titled The Whole Duty of a Woman in 1737. It was listed as a dripping pudding. Wheat flour began to come into common use for making cakes and puddings. Cooks in the north of England had begun baking batter puddings while their meat roasted to make use of the fat that in the dripping pan. It was later published in 1747 in the book The Art of Cookery made Plain and Easy by Hannah Glasse with the name Yorkshire Pudding. It was she who renamed the original version. Originally the Yorkshire pudding was served with gravy as a first course to help fill the appetites so diners would not eat so much of the more expensive meat.
Today Yorkshire pudding is still as popular as ever. It still mainly accompanies a Sunday roast dinner. It can be served as a whole in a cast iron type pan or baked in individual tins and is still served with gravy. There is also the ever popular Toad in the Hole which is roasted sausages enveloped in a giant, crispy Yorkshire pudding.
I opted to do individual ones baked in muffin tins. The key to making a successful pudding is letting the batter rest and, as Liz warned, getting the oil very hot before adding the batter. I will admit, I was really skeptical that mine would come out right the first time, but as I stated earlier, those babies did indeed rise. The outside was a nice crispy shell while the inside was tender and moist with an eggy texture. I can see why these are still popular to this day.
Here’s how you can make a Yorkshire Pudding:
*3/4 cups all-purpose flour
*1/2 tsp. salt
*3/4 cups milk
*pan drippings from a roast or canola oil; enough for 1 tsp in each muffin tin
In a bowl, sift together the flour and the salt.
In another bowl add in the eggs and the milk.
whisk until well combined.
Slowly add the flour to the egg and milk mixture.
Whisk until the batter is smooth.
Let the batter rest for about an hour.
Preheat oven to 450°
Pour in 1 tsp. of drippings from a roast or any other meat drippings you can save in each cup of the muffin tin. I used drippings from some bacon I had cooked earlier. If you do not have any meat drippings you can use oil such as canola, although the puddings will not be as flavorful, but they will still be mighty tasty.
Place the tin in the oven until the drippings are hot.
Take out of the oven and fill the muffin cups about 3/4 full with the batter.
You should see the batter start to bubble as soon as it hits the liquid.
Bake until the puddings have puffed up about 15 to 20 minutes.
You can store leftovers and reheat in a toaster oven. They also can be frozen in a freezer bag for up to 3 months.
Don’t worry, part two of my English food journey featuring pigs in a blanket will be posted soon. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it.