Toad in the Hole & Onion Gravy – Darina Allen’s Ballymaloe Cookery Course

I think I’ve mentioned before that Darina Allen’s Ballymaloe Cookery Course is now my reference book for any standard recipes, it used to be Delia’s Complete Cookery Course which is still a useful book but Darina Allen seems to be more comprehensive for the sorts of things I cook. I used Darina’s basic yorkshire pudding recipe. I’m sure her recipe is the same as everyone else’s but her instructions were good. This is traditionally served with onion gravy which I decided I’d like to try. I’ve never made it before. I looked in a Jamie Oliver book and he had a recipe that sounded nice but was a bit elaborate and needed all red onions. Darina had a simple recipe which took quite a while to cook but was very little effort. It tasted lovely, and my boys had second helpings although wasn’t very gravy like. I realised why I hadn’t been able to find a photo of onion gravy – I was going to say it looks less than appetising in the photo, but frankly it looks disgusting in my photo, it didn’t look great on the plate but it wasn’t anything like as offputting as it looks in that photo. I suspect I needed to cook the onions for longer than I did.

Ingredients for Yorkshire Pudding

  • 110g/4oz plain flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 300ml/0.5 pt milk
  • 10g/0.5oz butter, melted
  • olive oil oil or pure beef dripping for greasing tins (I used duck fat as I had some in the fridge)

Instructions for Yorkshire Pudding

  1. Sieve the flour into a bowl, make a well in the middle and drop in the eggs
  2. Using a small whisk or wooden spoon, stir continuously, gradually drawing in flour from the sides adding half the milk in a steady stream at the same time. When all the flour has been mixed in whisk in the remainder of the milk and melted butter.
  3. Allow to stand for 1 hour.

Ingredients for Onion Gravy

  • 8 onions, about 900g/2lb weight thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsps water
  • 600ml/1pt beef stock

Instructions for Onion Gravy

  1. Put the sliced onions into a pan with the water and cook very slowly, stirring every now and then. The sugar from the onions will slowly caramelise and become brown and sweet tasting. This process can take up to an hour.
  2. Add the stock and simmer for a further 15-20 minutes.

Ingredients for Toad in the Hole

  • Yorkshire Pudding batter
  • 2-3 sausages per person (depends on size of sausage and appetite)

Instructions for Toad in the Hole

  1. Pre-heat oven 180C
  2. Put sausages onto heavy based non-stick baking tray.
  3. Cook in oven for 15minutes
  4. Add extra fat if necessary to ensure base of pan coated in fat.
  5. Place back in oven for 5 minutes to ensure fat hot
  6. Pur batter over sausages and ensure tray completely covered
  7. Place back in oven for 25-30 minutes until batter puffed up.

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