Popovers are delicious, light rolls made from pancake-like batter. The batter relies entirely on steam to rise into giant, crispy balloons with fluffy, eggy centers. Though their exact origin is debated, they share many similarities with Yorkshire pudding, a northern English invention dating back to the 17th century. Popovers can be made sweet or savory, perfect for slathering with jam or stuffing with gravy. They’re traditionally baked in popover pans, preheated in the oven. (See Cook’s Tips.)
- 10 large eggs
- 2 cups whole milk (484 grams)
- 3 cups all-purpose flour (390 grams)
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt (5 grams)
- 1/4 cup neutral oil, rendered bacon fat, or meat drippings
- Position rack on bottom shelf with plenty of space above. Place popover pans in center of rack. Preheat oven to 425°F. (See Cook’s Tips.)
- In a large (64-ounce) blender, combine eggs, milk, flour, melted butter, and salt. While blending on low speed, carefully drizzle in 1/4 cup (59 grams) boiling water. Scrape down sides, and blend again on high until smooth.
- Turn on vent fan or open window. Carefully remove hot popover pans from oven. Pour 1 teaspoon oil or fat into bottom of each tin. Brush oil up sides.
- Divide batter evenly between tins. They should each be filled about 3/4 full. Bake 35 to 45 minutes until pastries are deep, golden brown and they “pop over” top of tins. Do not open oven before 30 minutes. Peeking will allow heat to escape and may deflate puddings. Serve immediately. They will deflate as they cool.
- Cook’s Tips:
- Popover pans differ from standard muffin tins in that they are taller than they are wide. The height of the pans is what enables steam to make the popovers tall. Muffin tins will work in a pinch but won’t create the same height.
- For extra crispy popovers: Bake 30 minutes. Reduce oven to 325°F (without opening oven) and continue baking 20 minutes more. They will stay inflated longer this way but will lose their soft, eggy interiors.
- The same batter can be used for Dutch baby pancakes. Pour about a cup of batter into a preheated, greased, 8-inch, cast iron skillet. Proceed with baking instructions in step 4. The edges will puff up, leaving a well in the center, perfect for topping with fresh fruit, whipped cream, and syrup!