The earliest mention of Yorkshire pudding finds its place in the 18th century literary text called The Whole Duty of a Woman. The book along with talking at length about gender performative roles also puts forward the famous and most remembered phrasing of pudding – the “dripping pudding”.

The phraseology roots from the unique way of how puddings are cooked and how they achieve their meat flavour. In the early preparations, the pudding was carefully placed under a roasting meat preparation where the drippings from the meat tethered flavour to the pudding from above. The most followed pudding preparation was however left by Hannah Glass in 1747, recorded in the book called The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy. Her text reads literary and fine :

“Take a quart of milk, four eggs, and a little salt, make it up into a thick batter with flour like a pancake batter. You must have a good piece of meat at the fire, take a stew-pan and put some dripping in, set it on the fire; when it boils, pour in your pudding; let it bake on the fire till you think it is nigh enough… Set your stew-pan [on a downturned pan] under your meat, and let the dripping drop on the pudding, and the heat of the fire come to it, to make it of a fine brown.”

It was also in recent times, as recent as 2008, when the Royal Society of Chemistry declared : “A Yorkshire pudding isn’t a Yorkshire pudding if it is less than four inches tall.” The mighty declaration came about when an Englishman, Ian Layness, a resident of the Rockies, complained about pudding “flops” for recipes in the higher country. Yorkshire pudding remains to be critical in retaining some of the very essential diet nutrients from the meat drips like the meat fats. The pudding preparation served to obtain the essential fats that were otherwise difficult to obtain in the earlier centuries in North England due to high cost.

An interesting fact about yorkshire pudding is that the baking mix is exactly the same as that of a pancake mix. Next time you have store bought or homemade yorkshire pudding mix, we know the two meals being prepared for the day! As mentioned earlier, the Yorkshire Pudding uses meat dripping making beef an excellent choice for the preparation. The rich beef dripping yorkshire puddings make for a staple British Sunday Lunch. You may prepare the meat broth separately as a side dish along with the pudding to expand the content of your meal. Yorkshire puddings admirably manage to make a full dinner in itself for its rich meat preparation and can be enjoyed for close family dinners.

The beauty of yorkshire pudding lies in the possible non meat preparation of it for vegans that retains the richness of a traditional yorkshire pudding. Unsweetened Soya milk is often used for the moisture a traditional pudding receives from meat drippings. Vegan yorkshire puddings have a characteristic puff unlike any and can be great options for vegans and non vegans alike. It is the same for gluten free preparation of yorkshire puddings, it is a tasty yorkshire pudding that just happens to be Gluten free!

So the next time you’re cooking your Sunday roast at home, think about this century old staple that has made it’s way into society.

Side note: You can never have too much gravy!

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