Our Downton Abbey cooking classes seem so long ago, but while vacationing in Seattle last week, I was reminded of how much fun they were when I stumbled upon a display of tea inspired by the program. I still have a few bags of “Mrs. Patmore’s Pudding Tea” left from class, but it’s good to know that one can still purchase the teas. They were created by the Republic of Tea and I found several varieties in the World Market in Tukwila, Washington.
But, back to our Downton Abbey classes. The recipe that most students were really excited to learn was the Yorkshire Pudding. Many of them were expecting that it would be a dessert, but very intrigued to find out that the pudding was savory and would be our “starch” for the meal. Traditionally served with a beef roast, due to time and expense, we served ours with baked cod. And, while our cod created a nice “au jus,” we prepared an onion “gravy” to serve over our Yorkshire Pudding instead. Both recipes are below (make a note to return to them when it is significantly cooler outside, as you need a really HOT oven to bake the puddings). Even without special tea, it makes a yummy side dish.
Makes 12 puddings
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups milk, at room temperature
3/4 t table salt
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (7 1/2 ounces), sifted
1 tablespoon oil, plus 6 – 12 more teaspoons
In large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk and salt. Sift in the flour in three stages, each time whisking until flour disappears before adding in more flour. Let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes and up to 3 hours. Preheat oven to 450F. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil into the batter. Fill each cup of muffin pan with ½ – 1 teaspoon of the oil. When oven has reached temperature, place muffin pan with oil into oven for 3 minutes until smoking hot. (Use baking sheet to protect oven.)
Carefully take out pan and pour batter into each cup, filling to 2/3 full. Immediately return to oven and bake for 20 minutes. Do not open oven door during baking, or puddings will collapse. Reduce heat to 350F and bake an additional 10 minutes until golden brown. (Reduce stock in onion gravy while puddings bake.)
Remove from oven, pierce each pudding with toothpick to allow steam to escape and prevent them from collapsing, or just let them collapse.
Onion Gravy (make while the pudding batter rests)
2 T olive oil
2 large onions, sliced finely
4 t Dijon mustard
1 quart vegetable, beef, or chicken stock
Heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed sauce pan. Add the sliced onion and cook over low heat until soft, golden and caramelized. Stir in the mustard and pour in the stock. Bring the mixture to a boil, simmer for 10 minutes or until the liquid has thickened and reduced by half.