What is a Yorkshire pudding?
For those who are unsure, a Yorkshire pudding (otherwise lovingly known as a Yorkie) is a classic British side. As the name suggests, it’s something of a pudding made from a batter of eggs, milk and flour. When properly cooked, a Yorkie is well-risen and puffed and is crisp on the outside, with a chewy centre. Normally, Yorkshires are eaten as part of a savoury meal – usually a Sunday roast – but they can also be served sweet with icing sugar and syrup. Yorkshire puddings are often baked as individual portions in muffin tins, but sometimes are baked in one large pudding.
What are the important things to know about making Yorkshire puddings?
Essentially, a Yorkshire pudding is the result of a thin batter being cooked in fat at a very high temperature. When it comes to making the batter, it’s best to crack the eggs into the flour and slowly whisk the milk in to create a smooth batter. This next step is really where good Yorkies became great ones. To ensure your pudding reaches new heights, it’s advised to give the batter a chance to rest before baking. In an ideal world, you’d make the batter the night before and leave it to rest in the fridge, and allow it to come to room temperature before baking. If you’re in a rush, even leaving it to rest for 30 minutes (outside the fridge) will make a difference to the final result. Lastly, when you’re ready to cook, you need to make sure your oven, as well as the fat you’re cooking it in, is rip-roaring hot. The reason for this is that the heat creates steam, which contributes to the height. The best way to guarantee this is to pre-heat the fat in the tin. Traditionally, the fat used would be beef dripping or something similar, but vegetable fat works just as well here. Add about a half a teaspoon or so into the bottom of the tin and place in the oven until the oil is piping hot. Once you’re ready to cook (ideally, once nearly every other element, except roast potatoes for example, of the meal is done, too), have the batter in an easy-to-pour jug. As quick as you can, take the hot tray out of the oven, add the batter and bake for 15–20 minutes. They’re done when they’re well-risen, crisp and golden. Serve them straight out of the oven as they’re best hot and crispy.