alright, i admit it! not officially participating in the bake off bake along this year has me feeling a bit shut out of the kitchen. although it’s lovely, because i can bake when/what i want, i did want to try something that really grabbed me from the show if i saw anything.
as i watched last week’s “batter” episode of this season of the great british bake-off, i smiled as they announced the contestants had to make yorkshire puddings. my personal experience with yorkshire puddings is kind of silly:
the first evening in our cottage in arisaig, scotland, i went rifling through the freezer to see what past guests had left behind and saw a cardboard box advertising frozen “yorkshire puddings”. awww, sweet! puddings!
needless to say, i was a bit disappointed after i pulled them out to discover that these were not like the puddings i know and love. they are just a “pastry cup” that you’re supposed to put more delicious things into, and not sweet at all.
after i saw how easy they were supposed to be (just a batter of flour, eggs, and milk), i knew i had to bake along with the show, at least this week. (don’t worry – not putting you all through ten weeks of this like last year, bwahah) it was amazing how at least a handful of the contestants actually failed to make sufficient puddings. the biggest problem seemed to be that they didn’t rise or take a proper shape. it seems pretty fool-proof to me: as long as you put enough fat/oil in the tray beforehand and have it piping hot, and then do not check on them until they are finished, you should have something that generally resembles a proper pudding.
ta-da! for my filling, nothing sounded better than a creamy, mushroom sauce, inspired by all of the delicious local mushrooms in season now around here. the sauce was gravy-like; just turned out beautifully! i served it all with steamed green beans.
here’s the recipe i came up with… (inspired by this one)
creamy autumn mushroom sauce
– 50g mushrooms of your choice (about three big handfuls)
– 1 small onion, sliced thinly
– 2 cloves garlic, crushed or grated
– 1 cup white wine
– 1-2 cups milk (more milk if you need more sauce)
– 3 tb butter
– 2-3 tb flour (for the roux)
– 2 pinches of dried sage
– salt & pepper to taste
1. add about a tablespoon of butter or so to a pan on low-medium heat, and add in the onion. when they go translucent, add the mushrooms and garlic and saute for about three more minutes.
2. add the wine and stir. continue simmering until the liquid is reduced by half.
3. remove mixture and transfer to a bowl.
4. make a roux by adding in remaining butter (around 2 tablespoons) and turn heat up to medium. when melted, add 2 tablespoons of flour. slowly begin whisking in one cup of milk, with pauses in between to thicken up mixture (it should be thicker than a
milk consistency at this point – if too thin, sprinkle in a small amount of flour and quickly whisk mixture).
5. slowly stir the mushroom mixture into the pan. continue stirring and add more milk if necessary, depending on your desired quantity and thickness. (sauce will thicken as it continues to stay on the heat)
6. add the pinches of sage, and salt & pepper to taste, as you like.
7. when satisfied with thickness and quantity, remove from heat and serve immediately in puddings, over green beans, and on anything else!
this sauce does not leave anything to be desired – i felt as though it was a proper sunday dinner. you won’t even miss the roast!