Every year on Shrove Tuesday, I tell myself I should make pancakes more often than once a year, but of course I never do. The same goes for Yorkshire puddings – somehow I never get around to making them other than at Christmas time. They always seem a little extravagant to have alongside our weekly Sunday roast – they don't contain a huge amount of nutrition, and are really just one of those yummy extras that you love to have but feel you should refrain from (like having garlic bread with pasta!). However, I figured that if I stuffed my Yorkshires with plenty of nutritious ingredients, everything would change and it would become entirely acceptable to have them for dinner.
A roast dinner can be a bit tricky for vegetarians like myself – I often feel I should have some form of fake meat instead of whatever roast meat everyone else is having, since it provides the protein that I'd be lacking if I just stuck with the roast potatoes and other veggie sides. I do like fake meat on occasion, but since there are only a few varieties out there that are any good, it can get a bit same-y sometimes.
So for these stuffed Yorkshire puddings, I wanted to include plenty of protein-rich ingredients so that there's no need to have any sort of fake meat alongside them – these Yorkshire puddings are stuffed with quinoa, walnuts and cheese, as well as mushrooms and spinach. They really are the perfect vegetarian dish for a Sunday feast (or a Monday feast, or a Tuesday feast . . . you see where I'm going with this).
As I said, I don't often make Yorkshire puddings, but they're actually really easy. You just whisk up a simple pancake-type batter, and then it's just a case of getting some oil really, really hot, adding the batter, and then not opening the oven door - otherwise you'll end up with pancakes for dinner, which is great, but not really what we're going for here. I think this is the hardest bit – I pretty much had to sit on my hands to stop myself from checking on them. It was especially hard since my oven door doesn't have a window, which meant I was mentally picturing either a completely flat pancake, or an oven entirely filled with risen Yorkshire pudding – luckily the end result was somewhere between the two.
By the way, make sure you put your dishes on a shelf with a lot of room above for the Yorkshires to rise into – mine rose at least 3 inches above the top of the dishes and they were just skimming the top of the oven! It's a good job I'd cleaned it a few days earlier!
Once you've made your Yorkshires, it's just a case of filling them with your stuffing mixture – depending on how they've risen, you might need to poke a little hole in the top to get into the centre, which should be hollow. It couldn't be easier! As you can see, I served these alongside some simply roasted tomatoes, but next time I'm feeling really indulgent I'm going to have them with roast potatoes, at least three different types of veg, and a good drizzle of gravy. Yum!
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