Tuesday, 10 March 2015

The best of British

I have been lucky to have some visitors from overseas, one from France and another from Korea and it has been an interesting and rewarding experience getting to know new friends from other countries.  I thought it would be good to let them sample some British cuisine so what could  be  better  than roast beef and Yorkshire pudding?  I like to make individual Yorkshire puddings in a muffin tin and the following recipe makes 12 muffin-sized puddings. Don't be afraid of making Yorkshire puds- they are really very simple to make and the trick is to have the oven very hot and keep the oven door closed so that they puff up.


A piece of beef suitable for roasting, such as silverside or rib of beef
2 eggs
175g / 6oz plain flour
175 ml/6 floz milk
110 ml/ 4 floz water
Salt & pepper
Sunflower oil or dripping

Roasting tin
1 large mixing bowl
Electric whisk/ hand whisk
Muffin tin

1.  Heat the oven to 180, put the beef in a roasting tin, season with salt and pepper and put it in the oven for about an hour to an hour and a half depending on how large the beef is and if you like it rare or well done. Make sure you allow time for the meat to rest so that it is tender and easy to carve.
2.  Peel the potatoes, put them in a saucepan, cover with water and bring to the boil.  Simmer for about 5 minutes then drain and put into a roasting tin that has been pre-heated and has about 2 tablespoons of hot oil or goose fat in it.  Coat the potatoes with the fat and roast for an hour.
3.   Put the flour, salt and pepper in the bowl and make a well in the middle.
4. Crack the eggs and place in the well.  Gradually add the milk and water, whisking  really well until  you have a smooth batter, the consistency of single cream.  You can use this straight away, although I prefer to make it a couple of hours in advance and leave it in the fridge.
5.  While the meat is resting put oil or dripping in each cup of the muffin tin and place in the really hot oven until the fat is sizzling.
6. Take the tin out of the oven and ladle the batter in, filling each cup about three quarters of the way up.
7. Pop it straight in the oven and cook for 20 minutes by which time the puddings should be golden and puffed up.

8.  Serve immediately with roast beef and a rich beef gravy made by using the juices from the roasting pan the beef was cooked in.  Heat it on the hob and add a splash of red wine or water from the pan you have cooked your vegetables in.  Scrape up the tasty bits in the pan, pour in more vegetable water and bring to the boil.  Mix a teaspoon of cornflour with cold water to make a paste and add to the pan.  Stir well until it is thickened and season with salt and pepper.

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