batter (eggs, flour)
| United States|
| Dutch baby pancake, Yorkshire pudding, Standing rib roast, Scone, Æbleskiver|
A popover is a light, hollow roll made from an egg batter similar to that of Yorkshire pudding, typically baked in muffin tins or dedicated popover pans, which have straight-walled sides rather than angled.
Popovers may be served either as a sweet—topped with fruit and whipped cream or butter and jam for breakfast or with afternoon tea—or with meats at lunch and dinner.
The name "popover" comes from the fact that the batter swells or "pops" over the top of the muffin tin while baking. Another name for them is Lapplander, a term for the Sami people.
The popover is an American version of Yorkshire pudding and similar batter puddings made in England since the 17th century, though it has evolved considerably.
The oldest known reference to popovers is in a letter of E. E. Stuart's in 1850. The first cookbook to print a recipe for popovers was M. N. Henderson, Practical Cooking, 1876. The first book other than a cookbook to mention popovers was Jesuit's Ring by A. A. Hayes published in 1892.
In American Food (1974), author Evan Jones writes: "Settlers from Maine who founded Portland, Oregon, Americanized the pudding from Yorkshire by cooking the batter in custard cups lubricated with drippings from the roasting beef (or sometimes pork); another modification was the use of garlic, and, frequently, herbs. The result is called Portland popover pudding: individual balloons of crusty meat-flavored pastry."
Other American popover variations include replacing some of the flour with pumpkin puree and adding spices such as allspice or nutmeg. Most American popovers today, however, are not flavored with meat or herbs. Instead, they have a buttery taste.
Ogden Nash inverts the historical order of events.
Let's call Yorkshire pudding
A fortunate blunder:
It's a sort of popover
That turned and popped under.