The Best Toad in the Hole Recipe
This has been a firm family favourite for many years and is a simple recipe that can feed just 2 or 4 people, or be easily made to feed groups of 10 or more.
Toad in the Hole is one of the classic British family meals and is just sausages cooked in Yorkshire pudding. There seems to be no real consensus as to how this dish got its unusual name, but similar dishes appear in recipes books as far back as the mid-18th century. Urban legend has it that a golf club in Northumberland was so overrun with toads that a golfer hit his ball into the pond, only for it to pop back out with an angry toad. The chef is rumoured to have made the dish to remember the funny moment.
Traditionally, I believe this dish is also served with a thick onion gravy and I often enjoy with creamy leek and cheese mashed potatoes and a healthy portion of peas… but it also regularly appears on our dinner table with baked beans and tomato ketchup too!
When my kids were little, I used to make the Yorkshire puddings in a separate muffin tin and cook them separately from the sausages. This results in crisper puddings (and avoided any squabbling amongst siblings as to how ‘fair’ it was!). Cooking this recipe all in one dish, as I have done here, is a simpler method for this Toad in the Hole recipe though, especially when cooking for larger numbers.
If you are looking to make this recipe vegetarian or gluten free, then for the former, simply swap out the sausages for a vegetarian alternative. For the latter, this recipe for gluten free batter is the best I’ve tried, by Becky Excell. I would recommend making these separately to the sausages though.
This recipe is one I have used for a good number of years, but after doing a little research I can see that there are many versions of a Yorkshire pudding – some with water and milk, some with more eggs, some with much less flour. My recipe tends to produce Yorkshire puddings that have a crispy bottom, a thick middle and a light and crispy top and really sort of ‘hides’ the sausages. Something like Mary Berry’s recipe here will make much lighter Yorkshires, which maybe your preference. In my opinion, my recipe is the best Toad in the Hole recipe as the thick Yorkshires works well with the sausages.
This recipe is 45minutes from ingredients to tummy and one I can rely on to please hungry teenagers at the end of a long and busy day. I am confident that even when my children are adults with children of their own, this will still be a firm favourite. This is the Best Toad in the Hole recipe and one I will be making over and over again… and I’m definitely not complaining.
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The Best Toad in the Hole Recipe
- 2tbsp oil
- 8 sausages
- 2 eggs
- 9oz plain flour
- 200ml milk
- Step 1 Preheat the oven to 200 fan/gas 7 – the oven needs to be nice and hot.
- Step 2 Pour the oil into the base of your oven proof dish. This dish needs to be large enough to fit the sausages with about of inch around each one. Place the dish with the oil into the oven so the oil gets nice and hot.
- Step 3 Into a large bowl or stand mixer, measure out the flour and then add the two eggs. Pour in about a third of the milk and whisk together, making sure to get rid of all the lumps of flour. Then add in the milk some at a time, whisking in between, until the mixture is the consistency of a good milkshake. It doesn’t need to be an exact science here though, thicker mixture results in a ‘stodgier’ yorkshire pudding. If you end up with something that is more the consistency of water, just add a little flour to thicken it back up a little.
- Step 4 Take out the hot dish from the oven (be careful!). Carefully place the sausages into the dish, equally spaced.
- Step 5 Pour over the yorkshire batter over the sausages.
- Step 6 Place back into the oven and cook for 25-30 minutes until golden and crispy on the top. Serve immediately.
- Step 7 TIP: Do not check on the mixture within the first 15 minutes otherwise you risk knocking out the air!
- Step 8 TIP: Yorkshire puddings tend to deflate slightly as they cool, this is entirely normal!
- Step 9 TIP: if you use really large sausages then they may take 30-40 minutes to cook. If that is the case, just turn down the oven slightly towards the end to avoid your yorkshire pudding burning.
The Best Toad in the Hole Recipe and pictures by Heather Brown.