Toad in the Hole is one of those things I don’t think I could ever tire of eating. For one, it’s got SAUSAGES in. Sausages are my absolute weakness, and the reason I could never be a vegetarian (I tried vegetarianism when I was about 10 years old, in one of my ~save the animals~ phases, and made it about 4 days before I caved because I wanted to eat sausages despite LOVING Linda McCartney veggie sausages). ANYWAY, I love it with any kind of sausages, and with onions in the batter it becomes this wondrous creation that combines everything I love most. My husband won’t eat bits of onion in ANYTHING though, so I either coax the onions onto one side of the tin which I’ll be having, or just use pork and leak sausages which, in my opinion, are every bit as good.
This recipe is from Nigella’s How to Eat (I worry that the more I post here, the more obvious it’s going to be that I mostly only use Nigella recipes for EVERYTHING); previously I used a recipe from my beloved Dairy Cookbook, but the yorkshire pudding always turned out flat. After a while I figured it was the recipe that wasn’t right rather than any fault of my own, so I hunted out a new recipe and as Nigella never lets me down I figured she was the obvious place to start. This recipe uses way more eggs than the previous one I used, which is obviously the key to this turning into an epic giant batter. She also says to whisk the eggs and milk first, then add the flour which is backwards from the usual batter-making method. I’m not sure how it works but it definitely does, and I’ve seen Jamie Oliver do the same recently so I can only see this as a positive thing.
This amount of batter would serve 4, but I make 3/4 of the quantity for two people and, if you’re really hungry, it is possible to eat it all. The rest of the time, I leave some of the batter in the tin and eat it for pudding with a scoop of ice cream and drizzled with golden syrup (it is for this reason that I use butter as the fat rather than dripping or vegetable oil which I think tastes particularly disgusting in this scenario). If you’ve never eaten yorkshire pudding this way, I IMPLORE you to do so.
Toad in the Hole
8/12 sausages (depending on how many you want each, obviously)
Salt and pepper
A knob of butter
Half an onion, sliced (optional)
Preheat the oven to around 200C and cook the sausages in a roasting tin for around 20 minutes until they’re brown on all sides.
Meanwhile, whisk the milk and eggs with a pinch of salt and pepper. Leave the mixture for about 15 minutes whilst the sausages are cooking.
Once the sausages are brown all over, if you’re adding onions to the batter then slice them up and add them into the roasting tin. Turn the oven up to 220C (whether you’ve added onions or not). After the onions have started to cook (or once the oven is hot), add the knob of butter and return the tin to the oven until the butter is sizzling and hot.
While you’re waiting for the butter to get hot, sieve the flour into the egg and milk mixture and whisk until it’s a smooth, thick batter. Pour the batter into the tin and cook for around 20 minutes until risen and golden!
I know it’s traditional to serve this with onion gravy, but I’ve gotta say, I’m not a huge fan. I’m not really a gravy person unless it’s with a roast or something. When I was a child I went round to a friend’s house for tea and was served this with mashed potato and baked beans and it was fabulous. I’ve never looked back.