Don’t forget the cherry preserves (photo courtesy Chukar Cherries).
March 10th is National Popover Day. September 1st is National Cherry Popover Day. What are we celebrating here?
Popovers are delicate, almost hollow “rolls” that majestically rise up over the tops of the pans they’re baked in, somewhat like a soufflé. Like a soufflé, they also collapse as they cool.They have outsides are crisp and brown, the interior soft and airy.
In the U.K. they’re called Yorkshire pudding and are often served as a side with a slice of prime rib or other beef. In the U.S., they’re enjoyed as a substitute for a roll or biscuit and are often served at brunch with butter or jam (although neither is required).
Popovers are not difficult to make. The only challenge is to serve them quickly, since as they cool they deflate. You can reheat them in the microwave. They won’t return to their original puffiness, but they’ll still be yummy.
Ingredients For 12 Popovers
1. PREHEAT the oven to 425°F. Place one rack in the lower third position, topped with an empty baking sheet
2. PLACE 1/2 teaspoon of butter into each well of a 12-well muffin pan; set aside.
3. PLACE the remaining 1 tablespoon butter, eggs, milk, sugar and salt in a blender and blend until smooth, about 30 seconds. Turn off the blender, add the flour, replace the lid and blend until just smooth, about 30 seconds. Set the mixture aside in the blender. If you don’t have a blender, whisk thoroughly in a bowl.
4. PLACE the muffin pan on the heated baking sheet in the oven, and bake until the butter sizzles, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the muffin pan and the baking sheet from the oven (you can place them on the stove top). Fill the wells of the muffin pan halfway with batter.
5. RETURN the muffin pan and baking sheet to the oven. Note: After you do this, do not open the oven door at any time during the baking period! Bake until the popovers have puffed up and the tops are starting to brown, about 20 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and bake until the popovers are golden brown all over, about 15 minutes more.
6. REMOVE the muffin pan and baking sheet from the oven and place them on a wire rack. Remove the popovers from the pan and serve immediately.
MAKE POPOVERS WITH ALTON BROWN
Here’s a second popover recipe, from Alton Brown. Watch him make it in the video.
The popover is an American version of Yorkshire pudding, a batter puddings made in England since the 17th century [source].
Both use the same batter. The difference is that popovers are baked in individual molds like custard cups (today, muffins-like tins are used). Yorkshire pudding is traditionally baked in the pan of drippings from a roast beef (roast beef and Yorkshire pudding is a signature British dish).
The oldest known written reference to popovers dates to 1850; the first cookbook recipe was published in 1876.
While popovers are beloved for their airy egginess, some people add garlic, herbs or other flavorings, including sweet variations.
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