Toad in the Hole is a traditional British dish made with sausages cooked in a giant Yorkshire Pudding. When it comes to comfort food, not much beats it. I've done this recipe two ways. The first is the traditional one large Toad in the Hole. I've also done Individual Toads in the Hole as I think there is something rather lovely about having your own.
How to make sure your Toad in the Hole rises.
Making sure the batter in your Toad in the Hole rises properly is the most important thing to get right about this recipe. It's all about the heat. Batter needs an instant hit of heat to rise properly. For this reason, you should choose a metal tin to cook your toad and not a ceramic or stone one. Ceramic and stoneware don't store enough heat. Once the Toad in the Hole is in the oven, don't be tempted to open the oven door to have a little peek. This will let heat out and your batter may not rise quite as well. Cooking the sausages in the tin first will make sure the tin is hot when we add the batter. You should do this as quickly as you can so as not to loose that precious heat. Don't leave the oven door open whilst you add the batter to the tray.
The second thing is that your batter mix needs to 'rest' for a minimum of 15 minutes before you use it, but preferably one hour. Resting your batter allows the starch molecules to swell and the gluten to relax which will give you a lighter texture. Give the batter a quick whisk before adding it to the hot tray as it may have separated a little. If you're leaving it for less than an hour, you can leave it at room temperature. Longer than this, pop it in the fridge. Although we want the batter to rise, it is correct to make the batter with plain flour and not self-raising.
What to serve with Toad in the Hole
Toad in the Hole is traditional comfort food. It is best served with mashed potato and a green vegetable such as cabbge on the side. You can also serve it with baked beans. A sweet onion gravy made with red onions is a traditional accompaniment to this dish and I think makes it extra special. See the recipe below for how to make the sweet onion gravy.
Individual Toads in the Hole
Cooking Individual Toad in the Hole in a muffin tray is a great alternative way to cook this dish. I find it easier to get the batter to rise properly. Plus, you get an even distribution of sausages! Cut the sausages into two so you can fit two pieces in each muffin hole. Smaller children can hold them in their fingers making it more manageable. These individual toads in the hole will rise quite a lot. When placing them on the middle shelf in the oven, make sure there is no other shelf above them as they need all the room they can get. You will need a 12 hole muffin tray.
When cooking these Individual Toads, I recommend adding a teaspoon of vegetable oil to each muffin hole. It's important to use vegetable oil or sunflower oil. Olive oil is not suitable as it doesn't get hot enough.
More Comfort Food Recipes
Good quality sausages made from locally reared free range pork are the most sustainable choice for this recipe. Your local butcher will more than likely make their own sausages from locally sourced pork. Try to buy the vegetables loose without any packaging and again from local sources if possible. The eggs and milk for the batter are two ingredients which are very easy to source locally and all are available as organic.
How to store Toad in the Hole
This dish is definitely best eaten straight away as the yorkshire pudding will be light and fluffy. Yorkshire pudding does start to deflate when it comes out of the oven, so it is best to only cook it just before serving. Any leftover Toad in the Hole is delicious cold. You can however reheat it. Cover the toad in the hole with foil to make sure the top doesn't brown any further. Heat in a hot oven at 220°C/425°F/gas mark 7 for 10 - 15 minutes until the sausages are piping hot. Toad in the Hole can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Toad in the Hole with Sweet Onion Gravy
- 120 g plain flour organic
- 3 eggs organic or free range
- 350 ml milk organic
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil organic
- 12 thin pork sausages lean
- 1 kg potatoes organic
- 250 g kale organic, or cabbage
Sweet Onion Gravy
- 10 ml olive oil organic, fairtrade
- 2 red onions organic
- 2 tsp brown sugar organic
- 1 tbsp plain flour organic
- 400 ml Hot Beef Stock organic
- 1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce organic
- 3 tsp fresh thyme leaves to decorate, optional
- Whisk the flour and eggs together in a large bowl and gradually add the milk to make the batter. Leave the batter to rest for a minimum of 15 minutes, but preferably at least one hour.
- Pre-heat the oven to 220°C/425°F/gas mark 7. Add the vegetable oil to your metal tray. If you are cooking individual Toads, you need 1 teaspoon of oil in each muffin hole. Place the sausages in the tray. For individual toads, it's easier to cut the sausages in half and place 2 pieces in each hole. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes. on the middle shelf until the sausages are lightly browned.
- Remove the sausages from the oven and pour over the batter. Return the tray to the oven as quickly as possible and cook for 25 - 30 minutes if cooking one large tray or 15 - 20 minutes for individual toads. Don't be tempted to open the door to have a peek as they will not puff up!
- Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, peel the potatoes and cut into chunks about 3cm². Add to the pan, bring back to the boil and simmer for about 8 minutes until cooked. Steam the kale or cabbage over the top of the pan for 5 minutes.. Drain the potatoes and mash together with a little milk or butter. Stir through the kale or cabbage and keep warm, or you can serve the vegetable separately if you prefer.
To make the Sweet Onion Gravy
- Fry the onions in the olive oil and sugar over a low heat for about 10 minutes. Stir in the flour then pour over the hot beef stock and add the sugar and the worcestershire sauce stirring all the time until the gravy thickens. Bring to a boil then simmer until you are ready to serve.
- Serve the toads with the mash, vegetable and onion gravy on the side. Sprinkle with the thyme leaves.
Nutrition per serving
The Nutritional Values are computer generated estimates based on industry standards and are provided as a helpful guide only.