Updated: Nov 18, 2021
by Elaine Lemm adapted from The Great Book of Yorkshire Pudding (Great Northern Books)
Photography: Ron Blekinsop
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 it is one I have developed over the years to produce perfect puddings every time.
The simplest, quickest and delicious filling for giant Yorkshire puddings is an onion gravy. Add a few chunks of leftover roast meat and vegetables from Sunday lunch for a more substantial dish. Smother with thick, glossy onion gravy – lovely.
Onion gravy is also perfect for serving with Toad in the Hole.
FOR THE YORKSHIRE PUDDING BATTER
4 large (or 5 medium), 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
FOR THE ONION GRAVY
2 medium onions, peeled and thinly sliced
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp butter
½ tsp sugar
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
750ml beef stock
4 tsp cornflour*
4 tsp cold water*
Salt and black pepper
To make the batter:
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 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 to several hours.
Heat the oven to the highest temperature possible; however, do not exceed 230°C/450 °F/Gas 8, or the fat may burn.
For a giant Yorkshire pudding, put a tablespoon of lard, dripping or vegetable oil into an 18-20cm/8in deep, round baking tray, springform cake tin or square roasting tin. For side-plate-sized puds, use a traditional four cup Yorkshire pudding tin, and for even smaller ones, a 12-hole muffin tin works well but only use a pea-sized piece of fat or ½ teaspoon of oil in each cup.
If you have 4 baking trays or cake tins of roughly the same size & an oven big enough to take them, prepare 4 tins in the same way & then heat in the oven until the fat is smoking.
Give the batter another good whisk, add 2 tablespoons of cold water, fill a third of the 4 tins (or holes) with batter, and return quickly to the oven. Cook for 20-25 minutes or until the puddings are golden and risen.
Meanwhile, for the onion gravy, over gentle heat, melt the oil and butter in a large saucepan.
Add the onion and cover with a lid. Cook slowly for approx 10 mins 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 cornflour 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.
* 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.
Alongside this dish, Nigel tasted Yorkshire Wolds Raspberry Apple Juice, & Yorkshire Greens Light Amber Ale: