Popovers – Luscious easy treats my grandkids love


A very old-fashioned breakfast or snack food has been rediscovered by my grandkids, several of whom make them easily and often with minimal adult help. These golden puffed-up tender sorts of hot muffins or breads are basically crepe batter cooked in muffin tins. Popovers, which have been made in America for several centuries, are thought to have evolved from the earlier British Yorkshire pudding. They are perfect for a dab of butter, or honey or a fruit jam, and are best right out of the oven. 

Popovers made by my grandson Jonah
The batter is the same as for French crêpes – a cup of flour, a cup of milk, a couple of eggs, and optionally a pinch of salt. They are, in our experience, something the young kids can make, and certainly love to eat them. 

The recipe makes 12 popovers, enough for 4-6 people. 

2 eggs

1 cup flour

1 cup milk

1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)

12 small pieces butter 

In a bowl beat together the ingredients other than the butter with a small whisk or fork until well combined. 

Set oven for 400 degrees (380 convection). Place a small piece of butter in each cup of a 12-cup muffin tin. Place tin in the heated oven until the butter melts. 

Spoon batter evenly into the 12 muffin cups. Place in oven and bake for 20 minutes. Turn the pan around and bake for another 8-10 minutes, or until popovers are well puffed and golden on the tops. 

Serve hot, with a little butter and/or fruit jam or honey.



Egg Frittatas, crustless zucchini, cheese and fresh herb egg pies


At our restaurant, we are occasionally asked to make gluten-free quiche-like items for breakfast catering. Based on frittata, a crustless Italian vegetable and egg pie, here are individual savory treats baked in muffin pans. Shredded zucchini, feta cheese and dill make very Mediterranean, if not necessarily Italian, breakfast or supper frittatas. They are best right out of the oven, though can be eaten at room temperature or rewarmed in the microwave for a later snack.

The recipe makes about 12 small frittatas. Two to three per person is a hearty serving. 

2 cups eggs (crack eggs into a measuring cup until the volume is reached, 10-12 eggs)

1 cup shredded zucchini

2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese for batter + 2 tablespoons for topping

1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese

2 teaspoons snipped fresh dill

2 teaspoons chopped parsley, flat Italian style preferred

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Large pinch ground celery seed (not celery salt)

Large pinch cayenne

3 green onions, green and part of white parts very thinly sliced

Set oven for 375 degrees. Spray oil or grease a 12-cupcake pan. 

In bowl, lightly beat the eggs with a whisk or fork until well broken up and smooth but not frothy. Add zucchini, 2 tablespoons feta, the cheddar, fresh herbs, salt, pepper, ground celery seed and cayenne. Mix well to combine. 

With ladle, partially fill all 12 cupcake cups to equal levels. Evenly distribute the remaining 2 tablespoons of crumbled feta plus the finely sliced green onion over the batter. Bake in heated oven 8 minutes. Turn pan and continue baking another 8 minutes or so until frittatas puff and a toothpick inserted near the center of one comes out clean.

Best served warm, with a little tomato sauce or salsa, or hot pepper sauce, if desired.

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