The Quest for the Perfect Pudding!

I will never be a great cook, but I get by and I haven’t poisoned anyone yet! I will never like cooking but I do feel good when dinner turns out well and this past Sunday the planets must have been aligned for me. I did a traditional roast beef dinner for my boys and everything was perfect! And what’s a roast beef dinner without Yorkshire pudding? Aye, there’s the rub. I always struggle with Yorkshire pudding. I’m ashamed to admit that I often buy the frozen ones and just heat them up in the oven. No matter how many times I try, I just can’t seem to get it right. My eldest brother, Peter, (pictured here with my sister and I) was a master of the pudding. In his younger years, he was manager of a hotel in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in northeast England, and as such, sometimes had to step into different roles when short-staffed. Consequently, he became quite an accomplished cook. When he last visited in 1991, he made a beautiful roast beef dinner for us one evening. The piece de resistance was his Yorkshire pudding. It was without a doubt the best Yorkshire pudding I’ve ever eaten. Unfortunately, I never asked him the secret to the perfect pudding, and so it was lost when he passed away later that year.

Yorkshire pudding would appear to be a simple enough dish to make. The ingredients are basic, the instructions straightforward, but I can never quite pull it off. Still I continue to try and this past Sunday, I performed a miracle! I consulted Nigella Lawson’s website and, using her recipe,  once more tackled the pud. After the first five minutes in the oven, I peeked in only to see it lying there, flat and uninspired. My heart sank – another failure. I walked away and busied myself with the other parts of the meal. And, lo and behold, when the timer went off and I bent to retrieve it, it had risen golden and crisp around the edges! I cut it into portions and proudly delivered it to the dining room. The roast was perfect but the pud was out of this world! With help from Nigella and brother Peter watching over my efforts, I finally mastered the pudding! The meal was delicious, enjoyed by all. And the personal satisfaction for a job well done, well, that was priceless.

Copyright 2012 Anne Corke

One comment on “The Quest for the Perfect Pudding!”

  1. I want pudding next time we’re over for dinner!

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