I’m a huge fan of James Martin’s 8-egg Yorkshire pudding recipe, so I’m going to use it here to make the most wonderful, crispy, fluffy and tasty toad-in-the-hole you’ve ever tasted.
Of course, a toad in the hole is a game of two halves and the sausage plays a huge part in this dish, so splash out a little and buy the best you can afford. I like a spicy breakfast banger that’s heavy on the pepper, but I can enjoy a decent pork and leek too. Just don’t adulterate it with a beef or, heaven forbid, one of the low-fat turkey sausage; it’s got to be pork!
Beat together the eggs, plain flour, and milk. Season well and store in the fridge for at least four hours, and preferably overnight.
Pre-heat the oven to 220°C/425°F. When it’s hot, pour a couple of tablespoons of oil in a large roasting dish and pop in the oven to heat up.
Brown the sausages in a frying pan. They don’t need to be cooked, just browned.
Take the roasting pan out of the oven and add the sausages. Pour the batter over them and return to the oven immediately.
Reduce the heat to 180°C/360°F after 30 minutes and continue to cook for a further ten minutes.
Serve with homemade onion gravy and some mashed potato.
Related: How to make the perfect mashed potatoes
How to make onion gravy
Thinly slice two medium onions. Cook slowly over a low heat in a little butter. Stir regularly because you want them beautifully caramelised, not burned!
When they are gooey and sticky add a splash of balsamic vinegar, a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce, and a tablespoon of plain flour. Stir thoroughly and add 250ml of chicken or vegetable stock (homemade is infinitely preferable).
If you like a little heat you can add a sprinkling of dried chilli flakes.
Boil for a few minutes to thicken and season to taste.
While I’m a pork sausage kind of guy, I’ve had some very good meat-free versions made with vegetarian sausages.
You can make this as individual mini toad-in-the-hole using 2 x 12-hole muffin tins. If it’s done like this I cook the sausages and Yorkshire puddings separately, cutting the sausages in half and popping half in each pudding.
The recipe will make enough for 24 of these small puddings, and we sometimes serve the surplus for pudding with some golden syrup poured over them. If that isn’t rich enough for you, you could add a scoop of ice cream too…