This THE best recipe for popovers, hands down. Do not lose this recipe because the cookbook it’s from is out of print and this recipe is a treasure!
My grown son still begs me for these popovers. Some call it Yorkshire pudding and it’s wonderful for any holiday or to make an ordinary day feel special.
Our Canadian friends often serve Yorkshire pudding for Canadian Thanksgiving. We Americans usually call these popovers, and I’m mighty thankful that we have the recipe. I’ve been making these buttery rolls for years and I never get tired of them.
I understand that Canadians eat them with gravy over top as a side dish for a roast. I suspect that’s the way they eat them in Britain too. They are slightly crusty on the outside and a little like a cream puff (but not sweet) on the inside, kind of a moist eggy dough.
My favorite way to eat popovers is almost right from the oven with butter that melts instantly–watch out for butter running down your arm! Sometimes a little apricot jam or honey is perfect too with a cup of tea. They are pretty darn good just plain; I even like them cold. These are one of those foods you can serve anytime: breakfast, brunch, lunch, snack, supper, buffet, potluck, picnic, game day, holiday!
Popovers are very cheap to make since they are just flour, egg, milk, and a bit of salt. Now that’s cheap! They puff up nicely, but since they are mostly air they can be eaten very quickly. Fortunately they are easy to mix up.
Popovers can be used as the basis for a light supper or hearty snack/appetizer. If the baked popover doesn’t already have an opening on top you can cut a little slice off the top to add goodies. I like to add shredded cheese & put them in the microwave until the cheese is just melted. You could add some bits of ham, cooked bacon, spinach, and/or green pepper to the cheese before melting if you like.
You can even fill cooled popovers with crab salad, chicken salad, tuna salad, etc. The large or giant popover pans work best for this if you want it as a meal. If you make them in the mini-muffin pans they could be little appetizers, but they won’t puff up much so it’s more difficult to fill them with anything. I bought a real popover pan, but I find I like them just as well in regular muffin pans. No matter what pan you use you must grease the pan. Butter gives great flavor but you could use vegetable shortening. Don’t use margarine and don’t even think about cupcake liners. These babies need a greased side to rise high.
The thing about popovers is that you have to pay attention to the timing and temperatures. It’s best to hang around the kitchen doing other things while waiting for them to be done. They have a tendency to burn on the bottom which ruins at least half of the popover. As soon as they are getting golden on top take them out & check one to see if the bottom is ok. Just use a table knife along the edge to pry one up. Every oven is different, so don’t just set the timer and walk away. Sometimes they can be done in half the time the recipe says. Check early! Don’t let this put you off trying these. They are so worth it. When you see what the best time is for your oven just make a note of it for next time.
Don’t worry if your popovers end up looking like something from the SyFy Channel. They have a personality all their own. It’s part of their charm!
This is the popover recipe from the 1965 Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook. It’s the recipe I love best.
You can even make the batter the day before. Just whisk it again after removing it from the refrigerator.
PS The recipe is for 6 popovers using a regular-sized muffin pan; double it for 12. I will multiply it by 4 for Christmas to get 24. You want to do this because these will disappear!