How to cheat……. and get away with it


Roast Beef

With some friends, who are acknowledged “foodies” coming for Sunday lunch, I decided to stay safe and cook my signature Sunday lunch dish – roast beef with Yorkshire puddings and all the trimmings. My butcher carefully selected a lovely piece of beef for me, a large piece as I think that the larger the joint, the better it cooks and tastes. He also put some fat on top “makes the gravy taste better”. He always does this and I always throw it away, thinking heart attack, cholesterol levels etc., see, I do pay attention to medical information.

Having completed my shopping the previous day or so I thought, straight after breakfast I started to prepare the vegetables. I got the beef ready for the oven, nicely sprinkled with freshly ground black pepper, in it went. I then had a coffee and a quick scan of the Sunday papers, before deciding it was time to make the Yorkshire pudding batter. In my store cupboard are quite a few types of flour, but horror of horrors, there was no plain flour in sight.

Now, I have been foolish enough to attempt to make Yorkshire puddings with self raising flour in the past, the results have been something entirely inedible and could be used for Frisbee practice! So I asked my son if he would be my saviour, pop down to the village shop and get me some plain flour so I could make the Yorkshires.

I was out in the garden when he got back, he shouted that Mrs Williams hadn’t any plain flour in the shop, but had given him some of Aunt Bessie’s. With that he was off to his rugby match, I heard the front door slam as I rushed into the kitchen.

What I feared was there, on the kitchen table, two packets of frozen Yorkshire puddings courtesy of Aunt Bessie, whoever she may be! There was no time to go anywhere for plain flour, indeed, there wasn’t anywhere to go to, well not and be back in time for lunch. With the smell of roast beef wafting through the kitchen, I stared at the frozen offerings. I couldn’t serve these to the foodies, could I?

 I opened one packet and took out the frozen puddings. Hmm they seemed the same diameter as my small bun tins. I carefully took one pudding out of its’ tinfoil, there was a small amount of grease in the bottom but not much. So I took some fat from the roasting tin, put a very small amount in the bottom of each of the twelve spaces of the bun tin and put the tin in the oven. When the fat was hot, I placed a frozen pudding in each one. Then, with fingers crossed, into the hot oven they went.

They were perfect; the foodies showered me with compliments on the lunch and asked how on earth I managed to make such tasty Yorkshire puddings? As my son had not yet got back from his rugby match, I just smiled and said nothing.

Aunt Bessie's Yorkshire Puddings