Tag Archives: Milk

Yorkshire Pudding


As you may have surmised by now, I like to cook.  And I also like to keep trying to get a recipe just right.  Or keep trying new ones, until I find the perfect recipe.  And by gum, I think I done it.   Found the perfect recipe for Yorkshire Puddings.

I love my Yorkies, really I do, but up til now my attempts have been a hit and miss affair.  I get recipes from friends, and they swear by them, I make them once and they turn out OK, but the next time I do it, flop.  And while I may eat the ‘hockey puck Yorkshire puds’ I still want giant, towering, light, airy, crisp puddings.  Something I can ladle my gravy over, something I can butter a little later and eat as a snack.

Just for fun I googled recipes yet again, and this time I found ‘THE RECIPE’ here , at a place called British Food on About.com.

I made them according to the instructions, in the morning, thinking if they turned out like little hard biscuits, I was out two eggs and a little time.  But they didn’t.

I did twiddle with the recipe, just a teeny bit, but that’s because I had already cracked two eggs.  I then proceeded with the recipe instructions and they turned out so well.

I was a very happy cook at this point.   I promptly inhaled two of them, and I called them breakfast at that point.

Here’s the recipe I used.   And I got a dozen lovely, tasty, airy puddings out of it.  Basically you use equal measurements of the three main ingredients.

2 eggs (I’ve been using Jumbo eggs lately cause they’ve been so inexpensive) cracked into a measuring cup.
I get a half cup of eggs from the two Jumbo eggs.
1/2 cup milk (equal amount of milk to egg)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour  (equal amount of flour to egg)
Pinch of salt

Whisk the eggs and milk together, really well, or use a hand beater.   Let this sit for about 20 minutes and then sift the flour into the egg/milk batter, beating very well, until it resembles a thick cream.  If you happen to get any lumps in there, just sieve them out.   Set the batter aside for a minimum of 30 minutes or several hours if you can.  I think the ones I baked later in the day rose higher.
Prepare the pan.  I used a 12 hole muffin pan, but if you have a pop over pan, use that.  Or you can also use a good sturdy roasting pan as well.    Put a pea sized piece of lard or shortening into each hole, if using a muffin tin, then place the pan into a very hot oven, 425-450 deg., until the oil is smoking hot.  But don’t burn it.  This really just takes a couple of minutes.

And here’s my newest tip of the week, or maybe it should be the hint of the year.  Really, it is that good.  And one I wish I’d thought of myself.

One of the main tricks of making sure that Yorkshire Pudding rises is not letting the pan with the hot fat in it cool down.  So, you keep the pan in the oven, and hope you don’t let out too much heat as you’re pouring the batter in.  Then you hurry up and shut the door, and cross your fingers you’re not going to pull out hockey pucks.

Here’s the hint/tip/LIGHTBULB over the head.  Turn on a large element on top of the stove, doesn’t have to be on a high temp, then place your pan on top of that as you’re pouring the batter into the cups/pan.  No loss of heat.

Place the pan back in the oven and bake for 20 minutes, just til they are all puffed up and golden.

Serve them alongside a lovely rib roast, or a nice roast chicken or gee, I might just make some for myself, just because.

They were the perfect accompaniment to the Standing Rib Roast.

I hope your Christmas was a good one.  I know we ate well on Christmas eve at our house.   My guests brought a wonderful assortment of vegetable side dishes as well as some desserts.  And there are no pictures of that because, I wanted to sit down and enjoy their company.

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Shrimp and Grits and Boat Club this month.


I love grits, plain with some butter and syrup on top, or loaded with cheese and served alongside some fish.   I’ve even had leftover grits, fried and with jam on top.  That was a little strange however.     But I think I now have a dish in my repertoire that I will make again and again.

I would have followed this recipe which I got from Miz Helen’s Country Cottage and she got from the Homesick Texan cookbook, but as I think I’ve said in the past, I live in a very small town and our little grocery store doesn’t carry a lot of stuff.   And when you have to drive over 30 miles to the next largest town to get some items, you make do.   And I made do, with some rather nice results.

This recipe called for fresh tomatillo’s, or canned.   Our grocery store doesn’t carry fresh tomatillo’s but they used to carry canned ones so I thought I was safe I could plan accordingly.  Well, gee, guess what, they don’t carry that either, anymore.   So I improvised, and it worked out well.  I always have at least 2 cans of La Costena Green Mexican Salsa in my cupboard.  It goes great over Peggy’s Paparito’s.    I served the Grits with Lime Tequila shrimp.

Cheezy Tomatillo Salsa Grits

2 cups milk

2 cups water

1 1/3 cup grits

2 cans La Costena Green Salsa (7.76 oz can or 220 gram)

4 oz. shredded Monterey Jack Cheese

4 oz. Shredded Cheddar Cheese

Cook grits in the milk/water until done.

Then stir in the green tomatillo salsa,

let it heat through a little, then stir in the cheeses.

Serve immediately with some Lime Tequila Shrimp.

Poaching  liquid  for Lime Tequila Shrimp

2 pounds shrimp, in shell or shelled.

2 quarts water

2 tablespoons lightly cracked peppercorns

1 teaspoon or more to taste, cayenne pepper

1 bottle beer

1 lemon, quartered and juice squeezed into pot

1 teaspoon dill

1 teaspoon celery seed

2 teaspoons salt

2 bay leaves

Prepare poaching liquid by letting it come to a boil and simmering it for a few minutes to release the spices into the water.   Avoid standing over the pot and inhaling the wonderful smell as the cayenne pepper can become rather strong.   Just keep your distance, not too far away.

Add the shrimp to the boiling water, one-third at a time.   Remove the shrimp after a couple of minutes, or when they start to float up and turn pink.

Place them on a baking sheet to cool down so you can peel them later if needed or desired.   Set them aside while poaching the rest of the shrimp.

Lime Tequila Shrimp

2 lbs. Poached Shrimp (use above recipe or make your own)

4 tablespoons melted butter

2 oz. tequila (I use Hornito Sauza)

2 oz fresh lime juice

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Melt butter in pan, add shrimp, tequila, lime juice and cilantro.

Warm through for just a couple of minutes or less, then serve alongside the Tomatillo Salsa Grits.

Oh,  and there were other dishes last night at the Boat Club as well:

Kathy made some Pork Tenderloins with a totally yummy dipping sauce and some stuffed mushrooms.   The dipping sauce is basically marmalade melted in the microwave, mixed with some soy sauce.   She had some ginger marmalade here and, oh was it good.   This is a great dip for coconut shrimp as well.

We also had an awesome Potato Salad with fresh apples and dill.

Tabouli, which I love.   I can’t wait for my parsley plant to recover from the butterfly caterpillars feasting on it so I can make some Tabouli again.  This was so fresh tasting.

We also had Ham

And some peas and snaps with fresh corn bread.  ( I think I love the south, all the legume dishes I’ve learned to cook here)

You have to cook cornbread in an iron skillet.  Really, you do.  Otherwise you don’t get that nice crust and the texture seems to come out all wrong as well.   This was some of the best cornbread I’ve had in a long time.

We also had some really great pickled cucumbers and beets.   Such a great accompaniment to the meal.


There is nothing as good as home pickled beets.  I think I could have eaten all the beets by myself.   I did practice some restraint however, I only ate some of them.

I can’t forget my contribution either, here’s the final Shrimp and Grits

As usual, great food, even better company and a good time was had by all.

Cream Puffs, Eclairs and other good stuff.


I just know you ran right out to the fridge, grabbed out some eggs and butter and flour and tried to make the Choux Pastry, and now you’re wondering what to do with it.   You have these wonderful little golden puffs, (and if you haven’t sampled one by now, I want to know why?), and need to fill them with something good.

In our house we love Eclairs and Cream Puffs, and I make them from time to time.    One  of the things I love about Choux Paste is that you can make a batch of these little puffs, and you don’t need to finish them off right away, they freeze, and freeze well.   So if you’re in the mood for an Eclair or a Cream Puff, just grab a few out of the freezer and let them sit on the counter after you’ve prepared the fillings.  By the time you get a pastry bag filled, the puffs will have thawed enough to work with.

There are two ways of filling a Puff.   One is by cutting it in half, squirting in the whipped cream or Creme Patisserie or custard, then placing the top back on and finishing them off.   My favorite though is to get a pastry bag with a large round tip, inserting the tip into the side of the puff and filling them that way.   Much more fun, and it cuts out a step.

Filling for Choux Paste

Sweet Side
Sweetened Whipped Cream
Creme Patiserrie
Custard
Chocolate Custard
Ice Cream

 Savory Side
Chicken Salad
Ham Salad
Crab Salad
Shrimp Salad

Honestly, you are limited only by your imagination as to what you use to fill your puffs with.
Here’s my favorite filling.   But if you have your own favorite custard sauce or custard recipe, by all means use it.

2 cups milk, heated
3 egg yolks
4 tablespoons sugar
2-4 tablespoons Cornstarch  (depending on how thick you want the custard)
1/2 -1 tsp Vanilla, or my favourite, Kahlua Liqueur

Beat eggs yolks with sugar and corn starch until well mixed.   Strain them if you like at this point to get that pesky little bit of egg white that always clings to the yolk out.    Set aside for a minute or two while heating the milk.     Temper the eggs by pouring a little of the heated milk into it, then add a little more, whisking it well each time.    Then add the tempered egg mixture into the heated milk, whisking it well.   You don’t want to scramble the eggs yolks by pouring them directly into the hot milk, which is why you temper the eggs with some of the hot milk first.    Heat to a boil, whisking it all the time, let cook for about 30-45 seconds, then remove from heat.   It should be fairly thick.   This will thicken some upon standing.    Pour into a bowl, then cover it with plastic wrap, pressing it down onto the surface.   This prevents a skin from forming.   At this point you can place it into the fridge and let it cool down completely, or to hasten the cooling, just put your bowl on a bed of ice, and let sit for about ten minutes or so.   Then take off the plastic wrap and stir, replacing it after you stir.  It should be cool enough to pipe into the puffs after about 20 minutes.

Then just place the tip of the filled pastry bag that you just filled with your Creme Patisserie, into the puff and squeeze, filling the puff as you are drawing out the tip.   Top with some melted chocolate if you like and set it into the fridge to finish cooling.

 

To make the chocolate topping, just microwave a couple of squares of baking chocolate, til it’s softened, stir in one tablespoon of unsalted butter, mix thoroughly, then use a spoon or pastry brush to add a little chocolate to the top of the puffs.  And VOILA! you have an Eclair, or just a cream filled puff.   Call it whatever you like.

 

And if you want this puffs to do double duty just fill them with your favorite chicken or ham or seafood salad.

Filled with some lovely Chicken Salad, each one pretty much bite size.

Now doesn’t this look like a fun appetizer or dessert?

I’ll be posting a couple more ideas you can make with Choux Paste a little later on.

For now, go and practice making some custard.  One nice thing about custard, if you don’t make it exactly right you can always eat the evidence.   No one has to know, it will be between you and your scale or …