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Puffing It Up in the Kitchen with Jilly – Yorkshire Puds

April 16, 2012

Yorkshire Puds and A Fine Roast of Beef 

Jilly’s better half is originally from England and loves a fine roast beef. The Mr. smacks his lips, he breaks out in a smile of pure joy, and he delves in. English comfort food. That’s what we had for a really lovely Sunday dinner recently.

The trick to this meal is to make a good Yorkshire pud to accompany it – where they are light and fluffy and browned just so and will hold a dollop of gravy in the middle. After many attempts, and yes, some website searching, Jilly’s most recent  experiment in the kitchen has yielded the perfect Yorkshire pudding. The secret is….as follows.

Yorkshire Pudding

Beat 3 eggs and 1 cup of milk in a medium-sized bowl.

Add 1 cup of flour and just 1/4 tsp. of salt.

Mix again until all the flour is incorporated but not too much that you beat the flour to death.

Set aside for 10 minutes and let the batter rest.

If you have a large enough roast with sufficient pan drippings, add ~ 1 tsp. of pan drippings to each cup of a 12 muffin pan. If not, add 1 tsp. olive oil to each muffin cup then place in a hot oven at 450° for 5-10 minutes, until the oil is nearly smoking.

Here’s where the secret to the best Yorkshire puds comes in:

To the batter that’s been resting, add 2-3 Tbsp. cold water and mix again. The flour has caused the batter to become a little thickened. Adding the water dilutes the consistency by just a little bit, but enough that the puds will come out light and fluffy. Remove the muffin pan from the oven and quickly fill each muffin cup half full with the batter. It will start to sizzle in the oil or drippings. That’s OK. The cooking process has started. Return to the oven at 450° for 5 minutes, then reduce to 350° and bake for 15-20 minutes. Do not peak until nearly done or the puddings will collapse. With the high heat and oil they will puff up quickly. Once you take them out of the oven they will collapse, creating a little centre where you can add your dollop of gravy. Leftover Yorkshire puds do not re-heat well in a microwave, so just add a bit of jam or honey – that is, if you have any left over. Around our house, there never is.

A Fine Roast of Beef

Choose a good cut of beef, sirloin or better, Grade AAA, no less, 2½ – 3 pounds or so, depending on what you’d like for left-overs and how many you’re serving (allowing ½ pound per person).  Fresh is best, but if frozen, thaw it out overnight.  If you wish to also make Yorkshire pudding, it’s best to pick a larger roast with bone in and more fat to get sufficient juices that you’ll need for the puddings.

Rinse the beef briefly under running water. Not too much or you’ll lose flavour. 

Cut up 2-3 cloves of garlic with a good sharp knife, slice the garlic thin, and insert into the fat and joint sections of the beef. Drop a few more cloves into the roasting pan for additional flavour. 

Sprinkle with salt and ground pepper on all sides of the beef.  You can rub in ground rosemary or wonderful meat spices, such as Drogheria & Alimentari’s “Meat Supreme” (available at Sunterra) or la Grille’s “Montreal Steak Spice”. 

Using a medium-sized roasting pan, fill with about ½ inch of water then place the roast on a rack in the pan.  Cover, then  put the pan in the bottom 1/3 rack of the oven.  Cook 30 minutes per pound at 350°, checking it after an hour and then every half hour or so until done.  Baste the roast with the juices a few times.  Add more water if needed.  Take the lid off for the last 20 minutes to allow a bit of a crust to form.  It will still remain moist.  

For medium – medium rare, take the roast out of the oven 20 minutes before you think it should be done, place it on a wooden sideboard, and tent it with foil while you make the gravy. 

Prepare a gravy from the pan juices with flour and herbs or use packaged Au Jus that can be made up in minutes. A trick to good gravy is to add 1/3 c. flour into a small jar, then add cold water to fill to 3/4 full, topped up with generous splashes of Worcestershire sauce. (Do not add flour to water or you’ll get lumps.) Shake the jar until the flour mixes with the water, then add to the pan drippings. Stir occasionally, adding additional herbs such as rosemary, thyme, and parsley. Allow the gravy to simmer for 15- 20 minutes so that the flour cooks sufficiently. Strain, then pour into a gravy dish.

Serve your very fine roast of beef with a good quality horseradish, mashed potatoes, and fresh veggies, such as corn, carrots, and peas.  Goes well with a full-bodied red wine. 

From Jilly’s house to yours – enjoy!


From → Recipes

One Comment
  1. My favourite thing in the world to eat! They can be trickt tp make and get rise so thanks for this post!

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