Tuesday night is Britcom night on PBS here in Little Rhody. So that means I have to pay homage to one of the most maligned cuisines. English cooking has a reputation for being bland and boring. When in reality, when well made it is wonderfully aromatic and rich and on par with anything the French have to offer. Besides has anyone bothered to consider what Americans eat? We apparently only have two flavors anymore; salty and sweet. Seriously, take a British sausage vs. American one, British cheddar vs. American cheddar, ale vs. Budweiser, etc.
The key to great British cooking (or any for that matter) is fresh, quality ingredients. The spicing is often delicate and complex, relying on aromatics more than hot spices and the proper fresh herbs.
Admittedly mine is a little thicker than some, if I used a 12 inch skillet it would look more “authentic,” but I like the little extra pudding to crust ratio of this one.
- 4 or 6 good quality sausage links
- 3/4 cup of flour
- 1 1/4 cup of whole milk
- 2 eggs beaten
- 2-4oz. of extra sharp cheddar cheese, grated (optional)
- 1 T. chopped fresh parsley (optional)
- 1 spring onion or two chives chopped (optional)
- a good pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper
- lard, oil, bacon fat or beef drippings
- Preheat oven to 400F. Incorporate the milk and eggs into the flour to make a smooth batter. Add in the cheese, parsley, spring onion or chives, salt and pepper and mix. The batter should be about the consistency of heavy (double) cream. Cover batter and let sit in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Put 3 T. of drippings, lard or oil in a 10 1/4 inch cast iron skillet (hence Americanized) or similar oven proof skillet. On the stovetop heat the skillet over medium heat. Add the sausages, cook until browned. Turn off the heat.
- Pour in the batter, make sure the sausages are rather evenly distributed. Immediately put into the preheated oven. Bake for about 25-30 minutes, until risen and golden.
It will deflate when you take it out of the oven. Don’t worry it is supposed to. Serve with veg or two, perhaps an onion gravy and the beverage of your choice.