In Danish: Popovers. Indtil for nylig anede jeg ikke, at de eksisterede. Jeg har måske endda set opskrifter på dem på forskellige engelsksprogede madblogs uden overhovedet at bemærke det – men så en dag fald og pludselige over dem på flere madblogs på samme tid, og min nysgerrighed blev vakt. Jeg kunne simpelthen overhovedet ikke forestille mig, hvordan de smagte. Og derfor var jeg naturligvis nødt til at lave dem.
Det er egentlig blot en pandekagedej, som bliver bagt i muffinsforme af metal ved høj varme, hvorved æggene i dejen bevirker, at de hæver voldsomt op og bliver helt hule indeni. Det indre har stadig en konsistens, der kan minde om en tyk pandekage, men det ydre bliver helt sprødt og let, næsten som en croissant. Som helhed minder de mest om vandbakkelser, men de er meget enklere at lave. Og så smager de dejligt nybagte med smør og syltetøj.
125 g mel
2,5 dl mælk
15 g smør (smeltet) plus ekstra til formene
½ tsk salt.
Slå æggene ud i melet og bland dem let med et piskeris. Tilsæt mælken lidt af gangen mens der piskes. Dejen skal piskes så lidt som muligt. Tilsæt salt og smeltet smør. Lad den stå og hvile ved stuetemperatur, mens ovnen varmes op til 230 grader.
Når ovnen er varm, sættes den smurte metalmuffinpande ind i den i et par minutter, så den bliver varmet lidt op. Tag den ud, og fordel hurtigt dejen mellem hullerne. De skal fyldes næsten helt op. Sæt dem ind i ovnen og bag dem i 20 min. Skru ned til 180 grader og bag i yderligere 20 min. Lad være med at åbne ovnen undervejs, da du så risikerer, at de falder sammen.
Når de er færdige, er det en god idé lige at stikke en skarp kniv i dem, så dampen kan slippe ud.
In English: Until recently I never knew something like popovers existed. I had heard of yorkshire pudding, though, but the thought of making that never really occured to me. Then, all of a sudden, popovers seemed to pop op (sorry!) on several different food blogs that I read – and I was quite intrigued by their description. To that came, that I was not really able to imagine what they tasted like – so obviously I had to make them so I could try and see.
I have a huge weak spot for breakfast, and everything fresh and homebaked is of course a welcome addition to my morning smoothie. I therefore sample as many breakfast recipes as I can. Only I don’t want to get up two hours before I intend to eat and wait for some yeast dough to rise, bake, and cool. So popovers are ideal, as they can be whisked together and baked more or less in the time it takes me to wake up and shower. I wouldn’t bake them on a weekday morning, though – but on a slow Saturday or Sunday morning they are indeed delicious and indulgent together with some steaming hot coffe, butter and jam.
Actually it is just a crepe batter – and I am childishly delighted at the way they rise in the oven and take on all sorts 0f cloud-like shapes while somehow yet reminding me of the vanity puffs described in “On the banks of Plum Creek” (though they are something completely different). Tastewise, they are more like profiteroles, but a bit more custardy on the inside. The contrast between the almost croissant-like crispness of the outside and the eggy, custardy texture of the inside is very unusual to me, but very nice.
This morning I ate them with butter and blackberry jam – and then later as a profiterole-like dessert filled with sugared strawberries coated in mascarpone. Which was also very nice.
I think I should bake them more often. Actually, I think I should bake them together with my 5-year old niece next week, when we are together in a holiday house in the North of Denmark, so we both can exult in the way they rise in the oven.
I used the standard recipe from Anne Willan’s La Varenne Pratique, but followed the example of Nicole Stich (who uses practically the same recipe) and added one tablespoon of melted butter to the batter.
Turn on the oven at 230 degrees Celsius.
125 grams all purpose flour
2,5 dl milk
½ tsp salt
15 grams butter (1 tbsp)
Add the eggs to the flour. Slowly add the milk while whisking. Add salt and melted butter. Take care not to overwork the dough – it should be whisked just until smooth. Let rest until the oven is hot enough.
Brush a muffin pan* with clarified butter (not too much, as that may cause the popovers to rise less). When the oven is hot, let the pan heat in it for a 1-2 minutes. Take out the pan and quickly divide the batter between the muffincups. They should be filled almost to the rim. If you cannot fill all the cups with the batter (I could fill 8 out of 12), you might add some water to the rest for protection.
Put the pan back in the oven (middle rack) and bake for 20 minutes. Lower the heat to 180 degrees Celsius and bake for another 20 minutes. Do not open the oven while baking, as that might cause the popovers to collapse (like a soufflé). But you may sit in front of the oven and just look at the amazing way they rise…
When finished, remove from the pan and pierce with a knife to let the steam escape.
* I have tried a silicone as well as a metal pan and prefer the latter (even though they both work), as I find it easier to handle and because the cups are smaller. And since the popovers rise so much, they need the heat and the support of the cups – so do not try this with just paper muffin cups!