Thursday, September 23, 2010

Goodbye Yorkshire Pudding. Hello Popover!

Whenever we serve a Prime Rib of Beef for a family dinner or Sunday lunch, I always make my version of a Yorkshire pudding, because what is a roast without all the trimmings? A classic Yorkshire pudding is a sight to behold, puffing up like a chef's hat, only to collapse in the middle after you remove it from the oven. The problem is, I've never been able to master the traditional 'pud'. I find it rather bland anyway. My challenge was to find a recipe that would be as spectacular, would taste better, and wouldn't collapse. Meet my Chive Popover.

The name 'popover' comes from the fact that the batter swells or 'pops' over the top of the muffin tin while baking. The recipe isn't so terribly difficult (eggs, milk, salt and flour) which forms an egg batter similar to that of a Yorkshire pudding — but it tastes better. I've made these popovers on countless occasions, and they have worked every time. Fresh from the oven, they're a wonderful golden brown with a crisp exterior and soft middle, and I love they way they rise from the muffin tin in a topsy turvy manner. They even glisten. I normally bake the popovers while the roast is resting, so they're ready to serve lovely and hot straight from the oven. I do add chives to my batter, which I feel enhances the flavour and makes them look festive and inviting. In fact, they are so inviting, allow for at least one or maybe two popovers per guest.

Chive Popovers

Makes 12

1-1/2 tbsp butter, softened for pans
1-1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp salt
1-1/2 cups milk
3 large eggs
chives, chopped

Preheat oven to 425°. Mix flour, salt, milk, eggs and chopped chives and whisk until it forms a pancake-like batter. This can be done ahead of time, covering and refrigerating the batter until ready. Grease muffin tins generously with softened butter (note: the larger the muffin tin; the larger the popover). Place tins in oven for 2 minutes to melt butter and heat pan. Remove hot muffin tin from oven, and fill each muffin cup 3/4 full. Bake 30 minutes but don't peak! Serve immediately.