Toad in the Hole

You know the days where you’ve woken up in the dark, schlepped to the middle of nowhere for work (just me?), spent the day having your ass kicked (just me?) and then come home in the dark AND the rain AND the cold?? Well those are the kind of days when you’re going to want to make this toad in the hole. I’d never made it – or even tasted it – before now, but it’s much quicker and easier than I expected (and just as comforting) so I’ll definitely be making it again.

After trawling t’internet (not for long to be fair, I was hungry) I decided to try the Jamie O version of this. I’m usually a Nigella girl but her recipe involved squeezing the sausagemeat out of the casing which I thought, as a relatively recent ex-veggie, might be a bit too ‘involved’ for me…

This recipe only took about half an hour to make and I already had most of the ingredients which makes it perfect for mid-week. I’ve never really bothered to make gravy before either but this was delicious so I shall now be having it with everything.

Jamie uses a thin baking tin so you get a deep, fat yorkshire but I used a larger, square one as I was worried about it cooking all the way through and I’m glad I did.  My yorkie was perfect on top – I certainly wouldn’t have wanted it any crispier – and just cooked in the middle.  No idea how he does it.  Maybe he has oven fairies. Or just a better oven than me (more plausible).

If you try this let us know how you fare! Was my easy ride beginners luck? And how DO you get your yorkies perfect in a little tin??

You will need:

Oil & butter

8 sausages – 2 per person, or enough for seconds

Rosemary

Thyme

2 red onions (as finely chopped as you can manage without losing a fingertip)

2 cloves garlic

6 tbsp balsamic vinegar

Veg stock cube

IMG_2016

For the batter:

½ pint mik

115g plain flour

salt

3 free range eggs

What to do:

  1. Pour yourself a glass of red, you’ve had a hard day
  2. Whisk all the batter ingredients together until you have no lumps, put to one side
  3. Pour oil into a baking tin until it covers the bottom.  Put the baking tin in the oven at the hottest it will go
  4. Fry off the sausages – not enough to cook them but enough to get them a bit brown. Jamie browns his in the hot tin but I read that this way is easier to make sure your sausages don’t look a bit weird and uncooked where they’ve been covered by the batter
  5. When your oil has been in the oven for about 10m it should be really hot, put the browned sausages in the tin (they will spit!) then put about 3 sprigs worth of rosemary over the sausages, pour over the batter

IMG_2017

  1. Put it back in the insanely hot oven and don’t open the door for at least 20minutes in case your yorkshire goes flat (nobody likes a deflated yorkie)
  2. Now for the gravy…
  3. Get a little pan, put in a large knob of butter
  4. Cook your chopped onions and garlic over a low-ish heat for about 5m until they are nice and soft, try not to brown them, it’s more gentle than that
  5. Add the balsamic vinegar, a sprig of rosemary and a sprig of thyme and cook for around another 5m until the mixture has reduced by about half
  6. Add your stock cube (hey, if Jamie says it’s ok it’s not cheating!) and 200ml-ish of water and leave to simmer away until you’re ready to eat
  7. Take your toads out of the oven when the Yorkshire is puffed up and crispy and golden on top
  8. Eat with veg and your lovely gravy
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