Peter Brears, in his book, ‘Traditional food in Yorkshire’, traces the first mention of a pudding made from batter back to the early 18th century, although it was referred to then as a ‘Dripping Pudding’. It seems to have acquired the title ‘Yorkshire Pudding’ in the 19th Century, due to its popularity among the coal miners of West and South Yorkshire as a dish to complement the meat roast meals popular with this community and affluent enough to afford them (see also ‘The History of Yorkshire Puddings.’
Traditionally too it was baked in a large square or rectangular baking tin, rather than the round tins we often find it baked in today. It was cut into squares and served hot with the meat and gravy.
Every Yorkshire family has its own recipe twist on Yorkshire Puddings, but Peter Brears suggests the following recipe as typical of many:
- 2 eggs
- 4 oz/113g plain flour
- ½ oz/14g dripping or lard
- ½ pint/275 ml milk & water combined
- Pinch of salt
- Mix flour and salt in a basin and make a well in the centre
- Break in the eggs and gradually add the milk and water, beating the mixture continually to obtain a smooth batter, and set this aside for 30 minutes
- Put the dripping into a roast tin and heat this in the oven until smoking hot
- Pour in the batter and bake for 25-30 minutes at a hot temperature (around 230˚C/450˚F/, gas mark 8, until crisp and brown.
- Serve immediately
Although typically served as savoury dish and part of a main meal, the plain Yorkshire Pudding can also be used as a dessert to contain cooked fruits, jam or sweet sauces.
Source: BREARS, Peter. Traditional Food in Yorkshire (2014). Prospect Books. ISBN 9781909248335