Hot popovers go well with soup on a cold day
Monday, May 05, 2014 3:35 AM
It is chilly, wet and rainy tonight. It's enough to make anyone feel depressed.
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon salad oil
1 cup milk
Place all ingredients in bowl and beat with an electric or rotary beater until batter is smooth and flour is incorporated, while scraping sides of bowl with rubber spatula. Spray muffin pan with canola oil spray. Pour in batter to about two-thirds full. Place in a 425-degree oven. Set timer for 15 minutes, then lower temperature to 350 degrees and bake an additional 20 minutes. Do not open oven during baking process. (But watch them "pop" and brown through the oven window.)
Serve hot with butter or honey. Makes about six to eight popovers.
One needs hot food for a cold day. I am thinking of soup and popovers.
Not to be undone by the weather, I put on my raincoat and wandered around in my yard, checking on plants in the plastic greenhouse in our backyard. I did some watering. I transferred a few re-potted rosemary and lavender plants from downstairs out into the mini-greenhouse on the deck.
It is cold, it SNOWED today and my outside thermometer reads 40 degrees. However, I am hopeful that under plastic, the herbs will be fine, along with some pansies and cole crops. They are tough and should survive. We are running out of room inside.
On the bright side, the days are longer and for those cold season seeds that are in the ground, the rain should help them germinate. It's been a while since we were up north and it will be a while longer until I can get back up there. It snowed 12 inches after I planted seeds there. I guess they are well watered.
A family bridal shower interferes with another trip up north soon, but I don't want to miss a chance to visit with family members.
My granddaughter, Kylie, had a part in the school play last weekend. She played Susan in "High School Musical" and I certainly didn't want to miss that! Her little cousin, Sylvie, came from Minneapolis with her dad to see the play with Dale and myself last weekend.
It seemed like everyone was elsewhere for Easter, so we had an egg hunt last Saturday with the boy cousins, but Kylie had already left to get into makeup and costume. Well, she admitted, no real costumes were needed as, after all, the play was about high school students.
She is turning 12 on May Day - almost a teenager. It is more difficult to think of gifts I think she will like. I picked up a gift card for clothes, but realized her last birthday was the last year I could give a gift card for Children's Place. I thought Target was a safe guess.
Kylie likes turtles. I found a miniature turtle figurine at the craft store where I usually pick up a craft kit for her. I started wondering if I am buying kits that get made, but I remembered she exhibits plants for a 4-H project.
The turtle gave me an idea to purchase items for a fairy garden. These are big right now, according to my daughter, who is a garden center manager. So I went to a local garden center and found an appropriate container, then picked out a designated fairy garden plant, a miniature arbor and tiny birdhouse. Oh, and I got the turtle.
The rest of the gift can be picked out by Kylie at a later date, so she can design her own fairy garden miniature landscape. I remember a whole section of fairy garden accessories at the Yellow River Garden Center, located near Spooner, Wis. Perhaps we can shop there or someplace in Minnesota for the rest of the plants and desired items.
Sylvie enjoyed the play, but was tired by the 9 p.m. closing bows. We had walked over from my house, which turned into a chilly option, particularly on the way home.
On the way home, we needed the umbrella my son suggested we take. Doron had thoughtfully tucked a headlamp into his windbreaker pocket. He explained to me he carries a "dad bag" that has an assortment of useful items for when he is out with his two young girls in his dad role.
I wondered, later, what's in the bag beside a headlamp and umbrella? It seems like an ingenious thing, but I had never heard about one before. He admitted he once lost his dad bag and wondered if another dad found it useful.
On Saturdays, I often see Facebook photos of the girls out in various excursions with their dad. Recently, both were pointing at Minnehaha Falls - while balancing on a stone wall, against wrought-iron fencing. Their mom gets a break on Saturdays.
Back during my stay-at-home mom days, I was grateful to have my husband take the kids with him as they farmed or did whatever. My eldest, Amanda, started tagging along with her dad to the farm for evening chores when she was 18 months. That gave me a chance to cook supper in peace, while it changed her landscape and broadened her interests.
Unknown to me, Sylvie, lagging behind with her dad, picked up a tiny dead bird she had first noticed on the walk to the play. We thought it to be a junco. She said she wanted to take it home with her and "keep it forever." However, her dad cautioned that dead things get buried in the ground. She might put a rock on top (after they buried it) and decorate it, he suggested.
However, he let her grab a box from Grandma's garage, put Easter grass in it for a bed and lie the bird upon it. Grandma offered a paper towel to cover the top and suggested hand-washing was a good idea before leaving for home.
I am pretty sure Sylvie was sleeping by the time they hit I-90. The dead bird accompanied them.
Last night, after searching for a recipe for this column, I stumbled across a laboriously hand written recipe for popovers. As usual, I found the word "salad" misspelled, as I thought it was for many years of my life - before spell-check. Why not "sal-id?"
It was from a seventh grade home economics class. I still have yellowed recipe cards, from when I was lots younger (and not the best of spellers) in my wooden recipe box.
Making this recipe in home ec class, when there was a total of 55 minutes per class period, was a bit of a stretch, for a listed baking time of 40 to 45 minutes. It was hardly enough time to mix up a batch, bake it and eat them. But Miss Wolf wanted us to know the basics.
My favorite part of the recipe was "beat vigorously." I can see a bunch of 12-year-olds wondering how much was enough beating. Another popover recipe I have in my collection cautions, "don't overbeat the eggs."
So beat, enough, but perhaps not too much. But these quick breads are not all that difficult to make and because the primary ingredients are eggs and milk, they also have about 5 grams of protein per popover. They are best eaten hot. If one has leftovers, they can be popped in the microwave and heated for about 15 seconds.
There are special popover pans, but an ordinary muffin pan will do.