Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Popovers

Friday, December 25, 2009

I usually make a big Christmas breakfast that tides us over until dinner, but today's dinner was going to be early, so I wanted to make something less hearty, but still festive. I decided on Greek yogurt, lightly sugared berries, and granola, but that menu seemed lacking in the festivity category. Suddenly, I thought of popovers. I haven't made them since the year I baked all the breads in The Bread Bible. 2006? Time sure flies when you're eating carbs. Fresh out-of-the-oven popovers with cherry preserves, orange marmalade, and some apricot filling left over from making Polish apricot Christmas cookies. Now that seems festive.

One of the great things about Rose's recipe for popovers is that they can be made ahead of time. I made them Christmas eve and put them in a little pitcher. I don't know why people (including me) are afraid of popovers. They couldn't be much easier. I'm going to have to make it my mission in life to convince people to make them. My former mission was to convince people to weigh ingredients when baking, but it seems that I got rather tiresome about that, or so I gathered when people started leaving the room when I merely mentioned how I loved my scale.

The trick is using Wondra flour. This is Rose's trick, not mine, but I will adopt it for my mission. Mix up Wondra flour, milk, eggs, a few tablespoons of melted butter, a bit of salt and a bit of sugar, and hey presto!

The other trick is in having a popover pan. I'm sure you can use muffin pans, but they are squatter and don't have the nearly straight sides of a specialized popover pan, which is worth buying even if you only use it twice in four years.

Of course, you could also use a full-sized popover pan, but I like to use the smaller ones, because they seem so tiny and harmless that you don't mind eating a second, or even, possibly, a third.

And a new Christmas tradition is born.


doughadear said...

The popovers look so nice, and how delicious they must be with jam, having, I imagine, a tender crisp crust. I say imagine because when I made these, around the same time you did, they did not turn out at all. You see we don't have Wondra flour here so I substituted with regular flour and they didn't turn out very well. Next time I'm in Buffalo I'll have to remember to pick some up.
All the best in 2010.

Lois B said...

Thanks for sharing the Wondra flour tip. I'm going to pass it along to my brother, who makes popovers every year for our Christmas Eve dinner.

Nancy B said...

Oh, dear, you've set off a craving for popovers. I'm going to have to dig out my recipe and bake a batch, I can tell.

I don't use Rose's, though I ought to try it. I have a sourdough version from King Arthur Flour that's really good, and it's time I rejuvenated my starter. This will do double-duty!

Melinda said...

Your popovers do look great. I think it will be a much look forwarded to tradition.

Now about that Wondra flour. Well it makes me want to scream and stamp my feet. We don't have Wondra flour here! So stop developing all these break through recipes that use it!
So there.
Happy New Year, bbb! love ya.

breadbasketcase said...

I don't use Wondra very often, but it's worth having a little canister on hand. I would definitely put it on your list of things to buy in Buffalo. What else do you have to cross the border to get?

Lois B,
If he already makes them every year, he probably has his own fool-proof recipe, but if you don't have one, it's a good place to start.

Nancy B,
I could probably try the KA version with my sourdough starter, but Rose's recipe is so easy.

Not even Kate can approximate Wondra? I don't know how they do it, but it's processed up the ying-yang, and I know the purists in Defra don't care for that. I like how they keep you safe from bleached Wondra!
Happy New Year to you too, dear Melinda!

doughadear said...

We trek over to Buffalo a few times a year mostly for fun shopping at the outlet mall or the Galleria Mall in Buffalo and to get goods you couldn't get here until recently like Brooks Brothers.

Buffalo of course is famous for their chicken wings and we finally made it to the infamous Anchor Bar,"home of the original Buffalo chicken wings" this past summer and eight of us devoured three platter of wings (about 150 wings).
That was a lot of fun.

breadbasketcase said...

I'm embarrassed to admit how long it took me to figure out why "Buffalo wings" were called that.
For a long time, I thought they were made from buffalo (like bison), and why they called them wings was a mystery to me.

pinknest said...

i love popovers! i like dousing them in cinnamon sugar. there's a really popular brunch spot on the upper west side here, called popover cafe. all sorts of egg and popover breakfast dishes. mmmm. merry christmas!

wenna payne said...

Some interesting thoughts here yummy - Merry Xmas

Dr.Tricia said...

Popovers are very festive and delicious.I would like to make say I will make popovers whenever I get a chance.

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