Sunday, January 2, 2011

Yorkshire Pudding

From Chrysler's with shark fin tails to an entire restaurant's equipment up in the attic that old pole barn on the little farm where I grew up had some of the freakin' coolest things!  I remember the smells so distinctly... It went something like this-horse manure wrapped around dust wrapped around time wrapped around pig manure.  Can that happen?  Yeah.  Throw a little leather in there too from a pile of old saddles, but when we had something good in there like skinned animals hanging upside down from the rafters it meant that shortly all those smells would be hollowed out and filled with the smell of hardwood.  To this day I can think of nothing better than the smell of smoked meat, especially when it is so bitter cold out and the smoked meat is in my own kitchen.  Of course, anyone smoking in his or her house needs to make sure there is appropriate ventilation.  In that barn there was plenty of ventilation.  I remember the smoker.  It was huge!  Maybe even industrial size.  If my father hadn't been a steel worker and had to make ends meet for his family I'm sure he would have been exactly like me: someone who dilly dallies in the garden, dreams up businesses in the pantry, meanders through the woods for dinners and practices being a damn good cook.  Or maybe I'm just exactly like him without the steel working.  Anyways, I'll get to the pictures cause people like pictures...

Polyscience smoking gun.

The meat. 
The smoke.

Rendered meat fat.

The Yorkshire pudding.

The end result.

The end of the end.
This is what I did!  I cleaned the skirt steak, trimming off all the fat.  I saved the fat and added it to a large skillet and on medium cooked it until a nice amount of fat rendered out.  I strained it, pressing on the fat to extract all the liquid. The result was about a 1/2 cup.  This is the necessary component for the pudding.  Here is the recipe...
1/2 cup beef fat
3 eggs
3/4 cup of milk
3/4 cup of flour
1/2 t kosher salt
1/2 apple sliced paper thin, tossed in squeeze of lemon and pinch of salt
Heat oven to 450 and place beef fat in 9 inch pie pan or divide into muffin pan made for six or small cast iron skillets.  Heat fat until smoking hot.  It will be smoking hot by the time you are done mixing your batter.  Mix eggs and milk until frothy.  Sift flour and salt together.  Add dry mixture to wet mixture.  Carefully remove pan from oven and pour in your batter, either all together into pan or separate if making in muffin tins.  Add sliced apple to top.  Cook twenty minutes.  You can start checking at about minute fifteen.  It will be nice and golden brown around the edges and the fat should be all incorporated and the tins fairly dry.  A little residual fat is fine.  Remove from pan or muffin pan and sit on wire rack to cool.  Serve with anything really...Steak for dinner, eggs for breakfast, eat with salad for lunch, add sugar and cinnamon for dessert with ice cream.  I had mine with the applewood smoked steak which I grilled and a bearnaise which is simply a hollandaise with tarragon.  Although I added a squeeze of clementine juice to mine...Classic!


  1. I make Yorkshire Pudding popovers every Christmas to go with a huge standing rib roast. The structure of the popover pan allows maximum heat exposure, and the presentation -- billowy golden-crowned popovers straight from the over -- is a crowd pleaser.

  2. I need one of those pans. I didn't get the same effect using the pan I did. But sounds marvelous Mark! I just love it.