You can use a regular muffin pan to make popovers. Special popover pans, like the one above, have deeper wells and make a taller, more dramatic looking popover (photo courtesy Chefs Catalog).
March 10th is National Blueberry Popover Day. September 1st is National Cherry Popover Day. Surprisingly, there is no National Popover Day, although plain popovers are divine.
Popovers are delicate, almost hollow “rolls” that majestically rise up over the tops of the pans they’re baked in (i.e., they pop over).
The outsides are crisp and brown, the interiors soft and airy. The tops “pop over” the baking tin.
In the U.K. they’re called Yorkshire pudding and are often served as a side with a slice of prime rib or other beef.
In the U.S., they’re enjoyed as a special substitute for roll or biscuit, and are often served at brunch with butter or jam (although neither is required).
Popovers are not difficult to make. The only challenge is to serve them quickly, since as they cool they deflate. You can reheat leftovers in the microwave. They won’t return to their original puffiness, but they’ll still be yummy.
If you don’t want to add the dried fruits, simply leave it out of the recipe.
You can make savory variations by adding garlic, herbs or other flavorings.
You can even bake them, fill them (e.g., with scrambled eggs and bacon in photo #5), and bake a little longer.
You can also celebrate the holidays by serving blueberry or cherry preserves with plain popovers (photos #3 and #4).
Ingredients For 12 Popovers
1. PREHEAT the oven to 425°F. Place one rack in the lower third position, topped with an empty baking sheet
2. PLACE 1/2 teaspoon of butter into each well of a 12-well muffin pan; set aside.
3. PLACE the remaining 1 tablespoon butter, eggs, milk, sugar and salt in a blender and blend until smooth, about 30 seconds. Turn off the blender, add the flour, replace the lid and blend until just smooth, about 30 seconds. Set the mixture aside in the blender. If you don’t have a blender, whisk thoroughly in a bowl.
4. PLACE the muffin pan on the heated baking sheet in the oven, and bake until the butter sizzles, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the muffin pan and the baking sheet from the oven (you can place them on the stove top). Fill the wells of the muffin pan halfway with batter.
5. RETURN the muffin pan and baking sheet to the oven. Note: After you do this, do not open the oven door at any time during the baking period! Bake until the popovers have puffed up and the tops are starting to brown, about 20 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and bake until the popovers are golden brown all over, about 15 minutes more.
The popover is an American version of Yorkshire pudding, a batter pudding made in England since the 17th century [source].
Both use the same batter. The difference:
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