Popovers must be magic—how else could four pantry staples (flour, eggs, salt and milk) be transformed into such dramatic, impressive rolls?
Biscuits and muffins have their own charm, to be sure, but they somehow pale in comparison to the steamy, hollow center of a perfectly baked popover. American in origin, they’re said to be a close cousin of Britain’s Yorkshire pudding, modified by Colonial Americans nearly three centuries ago.
Making them is ridiculously simple—even more so considering the dramatic results. It’s the high proportion of liquid in the batter that creates steam that raises the bread.
But just as quick as they rise, they fall. Rush them to the table while they’re still full of hot air.
Tips for Perfect Popovers
- Make sure oven is thoroughly preheated.
- Grease the muffin or popover pan liberally.
- Have all ingredients at room temperature.
- Don’t overbeat the eggs.
- Fill muffin or popover cups only about halfway. If they’re too full, popovers won’t rise properly.
- Don’t open the oven door during baking.
By Stacey Morris, a writer living in Queensbury, N.Y.