Comfort food: Toad in the Hole

OK — one person’s Toad in the Hole might be another person’s Egg in a Basket. But actually, in the UK, Toad in the Hole is nothing like an Egg in a Basket. 

No, the ultimate comfort food in the UK is Toad in the Hole: sausages in a fluffy Yorkshire pudding batter. It’s totally delish and the perfect treat when dark nights close in during the fall. 

In this article, I’ll explain how to make the ultimate British Toad in the Hole and a luxurious fish pie. No eggs in toast holes to be seen for miles. 

Ready? Let’s get a-cooking! 

What is Toad in the Hole?

In the USA, Toad in the Hole is what we in the UK call “Egg in a Basket” — that’s an egg fried into a little window cut out of a slice of white toast. And while this is undoubtedly delicious, it’s not Toad in the Hole. 

Oh, no!

But if your heart is a-fluttering, I’ll put your mind at rest. No frogs, toads, or slimy amphibians are harmed nor found anywhere near this very British classic.  

Indeed, a British Toad in the Hole (or “Toad in’th ‘ole” as they call it in Yorkshire) is:

  • A pack of good-quality sausages 
  • 1 ¼ cups/140 g Flour 
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup/175 ml semi-skimmed milk (that’s 2% for the USA)

Can I make a veggie Toad in the Hole?

Yes! Just substitute meaty sausages for good-quality vegetarian sausages, and you have a super tasty, satisfying autumnal meal for the veggies in the household as well. 

In fact, this recipe is so simple you can easily make separate veggie and meaty versions. That way, everyone’s happy.

The method

This all happens in the oven, so preheat it to 220ºC/430ºF. Once it has reached temperature, place the sausages in a roasting tin, along with 1 tbsp of sunflower oil, and bake for 15 minutes, until they turn brown. 

While the sausages cook, it’s plenty of time to make up the batter. 

The batter

Sift your flour into a mixing bowl, adding ½ tsp of salt. Create a well in the middle and crack your two eggs into the Hole. Mix it with an electric whisk (or if you’re feeling energetic, use a hand whisk!). Once the flour and egg form into a paste, gradually add the milk while whisking. 

This should take a maximum of five minutes. So, leave the batter mix to stand until your sausages are brown. 

Add the batter to the sausages.

Once the sausages are browned, remove the tin from the oven. The oil should be sizzling by now, but heat the tin on the stovetop if it isn’t.

Now, pour the batter mix around the sausages – avoiding covering the upper-facing side of the sausages with the batter if possible.

Cook until risen

Finally, return the roasting tin to the oven and cook for another 25-30 minutes until the batter mix has risen and turned golden. 

Remove from the oven, cut into portions, giving each person two or three sausages. 

Wine choice?

This delicious, indulgent meal demands a ripe, jammy red, such as a cabernet or a shiraz. Alternatively, go for a Chilean Merlot or a Carmenere. 

And enjoy! 

Serve with a good onion gravy, mashed potatoes, and your favorite steamed veg!

That’ll put a smile on your face! 


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