A highly traditional Lancashire pairing with a punchy crab salad
This may be hard to believe if you haven’t yet tried it, but there is something even better than roast beef to serve with yorkshire puddings: raspberry vinegar. Its sharpness and underlying sweet fruitiness cuts through the yorkies’ indulgently billowing crispy shell and meltingly soft inside. The vinegar gives it a bit of an edge; more depth of flavour. Not only is it truly delicious, it is also highly traditional. Even more so than roast beef.
In the 1700s, these batter puddings would have cooked in the dripping fat of a joint as it roasted over the fire and be served as a course before the roast meat. It was the Yorkshire tradition to have raspberry vinegar alongside.
The yorkshire pudding’s flavours and texture work well with this light and punchy crab, mint and dill salad.
175ml whole milk
2 large eggs
70g plain flour, sifted
1½ tsp raspberry vinegar, plus more for serving
350g white crab meat
½ tsp caster sugar
2 tbsp fresh mint, chopped
2 tbsp fresh dill, chopped
Whisk together the milk and eggs in a large mixing bowl. Season well, then whisk in the sifted flour and set aside to rest at room temperature for 1 hour.
Heat the oven to 230C. Pour approx 3mm of oil into the holes in the tin (just 8 of them if you are using a muffin tin). Put that into the oven for 10 mins to get the oil very hot. Whisk the vinegar into the batter.
Working quickly, take the tin out of the oven and ladle the pudding batter between the holes, not quite to the top. Return the tin to the oven for 15-20 mins, resisting the temptation to open the door before 15 mins is up. After that, you can quickly open it to check on the puddings or rotate the tin as needed to ensure even cooking. They are done when well risen, golden and crisp.
While the yorkshire puddings are baking, prepare the crab. Use a fork to mix together the crab meat with the sugar, a good squeeze of lime, seasoning, and finally the fresh herbs. Divide between 4 plates.
As soon as the yorkshire puddings are done, add them to the plates of crab and serve with raspberry vinegar drizzled over—and be quick. Yorkshire puddings are at their perkiest, fluffiest, crispiest best when first ready, so before dishing up make sure everyone is at the table, the dog has been out, urgent text messages have been sent. A little Yorkshire-inspired direct-ness is what’s needed and anyone tucking into these puddings will thank you for it.
ALTERNATIVE: Some Yorkshire cooks also still take heed of another local tradition for putting a little vinegar into the basic batter mix.
Try serving them with seared pigeon breast, a vegetable slaw, or some hot-smoked salmon with horseradish sauce.
Recipe: Angela Clutton