Hello and happy Saturday! Welcome back to Kelly’s Kitchen, I’m so happy you’re here. Yesterday on Fridays with Oscar, Beth shared a great baked eggs recipe for an Easter Sunday brunch. Today I want to share with you a brunch side: how to make perfect herby popovers.
Popovers are similar to Yorkshire pudding; they are eggy, airy and light. A wonderful accompaniment to any meal, they are especially delicious for breakfast and brunch. They can go sweet or savory. Popovers can even be a main dish because you can fill them. Think: meat with gravy, or vegetables with a cream sauce; maybe for dessert with fruit and sweetened ricotta and a drizzle of honey. sky’s the limit!
To add a light flavor and scent to my brunch popovers, I am using Herbes de Provence which I pulverized a little further with a mortar and pestle. My particular Herbes mixture contains fennel, lavender, sage and tarragon. I think this mix is beautifully floral and savory, and goes well with a variety of jams, preserves and savory toppings.
While a basket of fresh warm popovers will be an impressive part of your brunch table, they are pretty simple to make. The trick to getting perfect popovers is all about the steam and the temperature of your ingredients. Popovers need steam to puff up and “popover”. If your batter is too cold they won’t build steam quickly enough to popover, if the batter is too warm it’ll cook the eggs and they won’t rise. There are important steps for getting the maximum amount of steam to give your popovers the loftiness they’re known for. We will cover those steps in today’s recipe.
You don’t need a special popover tin to make these. I happen to have a muffin tin and a popover tin, so I will show you how they come out in both. Popovers turn out somewhat amorphous regardless, so I don’t really have a preference for the tin.
*Pro-tip: put your tin on a sheet tray for a few reasons: a) to catch the drips, b) it’s easier to handle the tins and, c) the sheet tray will conduct heat more evenly.
Step 1: You will bake the popovers on a lower rack in your oven, so rearrange your oven racks as needed. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees, this will likely take about 30 minutes. Once you’re at temperature, put your tins in the oven to preheat for about 10 minutes while you mix the batter.
This is the first trick to getting the batter to steam – hot tins.
Step 2: Let your ingredients come to room temperature. You can either let the eggs and milk sit on the counter for an hour, or you can warm the eggs in hot water for 10 minutes and microwave the milk until it is lukewarm (about 1 minute).
Step 3: Mix your 3 eggs and 1 cup milk until frothy, you want a little air in there. The bubbles will help make the popovers light and airy.
Step 4: Add 1 cup of all purpose flour and ½ teaspoon coarse salt. Add the herbs (if using). I am adding about 1 teaspoon of my Herbes blend.
Mix thoroughly, but don’t over mix your batter or your popovers will be tough. It’s ok if there are a few small lumps in it. The batter should be pretty thin, like a thin pancake batter.
Step 5: I like to use butter to grease my tins instead of using cooking spray. What I like to do is drop a ½ inch-sized cube of butter into each well just before I pour in the batter. If you do it this way, cut your butter cubes before you mix your batter so they’re ready to go and aren’t too cold.
*Use caution when pulling tins from the oven, they’re hot and you will want to work quickly to get your butter in the tins and pour the batter before the tins cool too much.
Step 6: Pour the batter to fill each well about ½ full. Bake at 450 degrees for 20 minutes. Then reduce temperature to 350 and bake for 6-10 minutes more. Popovers should be golden brown and popping over, out of their wells.
Step 7: Remove from the oven and transfer popovers to a wire cooling rack.
Step 8: Serve while still warm from the oven.
Popovers are extra special when you serve them with a variety of toppings. Because I made herbed popovers, I am serving them with homemade lemon curd, Georgia peach jam, creme fraiche and of course, salted butter. Cultured butter would be another delicious way to top your popovers.
For a savory option, consider adding smoked salmon and creme fraiche to your array of accoutrements. My husband especially likes them this way. You can mix some lemon and chives or dill in your creme fraiche for more flavor!
Preheat oven to 450 degrees, preheat tins in oven
Mix room temperature eggs and milk until frothy
Add flour, salt, herbs and mix thoroughly
Remove tins from oven and drop in 1/2 inch butter cubes
Pour batter to fill wells 1/3 to halfway
Bake at 450 for 20 minutes, then reduce temperature to 350 and bake for 6-10 minutes more until popovers are golden brown and popping over
Transfer to cooling racks and serve warm
And that’s how to make perfect herby popovers. I hope you give them a try, they are deceptively simple and really add some specialness to your meal. Thank you for tuning in and be sure to let me know in the comments if there is anything in particular you’d like to see in this column. You can also find me on facebook and instagram. Thanks so much – I look forward to seeing you again next week! xo Kelly
is our 40s+ fashion & food contributor. She posts a Daily Look on Tuesdays, writes about Fashion on Thursdays, joins Beth for Fridays with Oscar and shares a new recipe Sunday evenings.
She’s 47, 5’0, and a petite 0/XS.
Kelly also has a food blog called Djalali Cooks, which you can find by clicking the world icon below.