When speaking about pudding, the first thing that comes to mind is a kind of dessert. But in the case of Yorkshire Pudding, it is rarely served as such. Made of milk, flour, eggs and salt, it is usually basted with gravy to accompany roast meet.
As its name indicates, the Yorkshire pudding originated in Yorkshire, a historic county of Northern England. The first reference to this dish is to be found in a book of 1737: The Whole Duty of a Woman. The people made use of the fat in the dripping pan to cook a pudding. The recipe was the same as now, but it was then called dripping pudding (“dripping” comes from spit-roast meat). Ten years later, it was renamed “Yorkshire pudding” by Hannah Glasse, a famous English cookery writer of the 18th century, in her book The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy. The popularity of the book was such that it spread the word of the Yorkshire Pudding. The two versions were the same, except that the one of 1737 was flatter than the puffy version known today. And this is apparently an important thing. Actually, in 2008, the Royal Society of Chemistry edited a ruling concerning the Yorkshire Pudding. This professional association of the United Kingdom then wrote that “a Yorkshire pudding isn't a Yorkshire pudding if it is less than four inches tall”.
Nowadays, this particular type of pudding generally accompanies the main course. It goes well together with roast beef, chicken or any dish with sauce. Gravy (meat juice) is actually considered by the British as the best accompaniment to the Yorkshire Pudding. Traditionally, however, it was eaten with onion juice as a starter. It is often said that it was in order to stuff the guests with something cheap so that they would eat less of the more expensive dishes that followed. Sometimes it is also served as a snack with jam or with jam and ice cream, in the common understanding of “pudding”.
Last but not least, you can here find a recipe by the famous cook Jamie Oliver:
Ingredients (12 puddings)
- 3 eggs
- 115 g plain flour
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 285 ml milk
- 12 tablespoons vegetable oil
1. Whisk the eggs, flour, salt, and milk together really well in a bowl to make your batter. Pour the batter into a jug, and let it sit for 30 minutes before you use it.
2. Turn your oven up to the highest setting, and place a 12 cup muffin tray in the oven to heat up for 5 minutes.
3. Place 1 tb of oil in each muffin hole, and put the tray back into the oven and heat until oil is very hot.
4. Open oven door, slide the tray half out, and carefully pour the batter into the muffin holes.
5. Close the door and cook for 15 minutes without opening the oven door.
6. Serve immediately.
Now that you know more about Yorkshire pudding and that you are in possession of the recipe by the famous British chef, you can finally try the staple of the British Sunday lunch yourself.
Caroline Laurent & Sophie Trigaux