Toad in the hole with sweet red onion gravy


180g plain flour

3 large eggs

180ml milk

6-8 good quality sausages

1 tablespoon neutral cooking oil

Sea salt

Black pepper

For the sweet red onion gravy:

3 red onions, roughly sliced

2 teaspoons demerara sugar

50ml balsamic vinegar

300ml red wine

600ml beef stock


1 tablespoon plain flour

1 tablespoon finely chopped thyme leaves

Sea salt

Ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 220C.

For the red onion gravy, begin by reducing the red wine and stock over a medium heat, until reduced by 1/3.

Heat the butter in a saucepan over a medium heat. When the butter is foaming, add the red onions and fry, stirring regularly. You do want some colour on the onions so increase the heat if you need to. Add the chopped thyme and the sugar and continue to fry until soft and golden brown. Sprinkle the flour over the onions and stir. Pour in the balsamic vinegar and reduce by half. Add the reduced red wine and stock and gently simmer over a medium heat until it’s the desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper.

This Yorkshire pudding batter requires equal quantities of eggs, plain flour and milk. So if 3 eggs cracked into a measuring jug measure 180ml, then simply measure 180ml of milk and flour (adjust according to how many mouths you want to feed!). Add the eggs, flour and milk to a bowl and mix with a hand-blender (electric or hand-whisk will be fine too) until smooth. Season with a little salt and pepper and pass through a sieve into a jug. This can be done the night before - some say this helps the Yorkshires rise better, but it isn’t essential!

Put the sausages and oil into a deep roasting tray and roast in the oven for 10 minutes, until the sausages begin to colour. Have the jug of batter ready to pour into the roasting tray. Remove the sausages from the oven and pour the batter around the sausages. They should be out of the oven for as little time as possible at this point, so the roasting tray doesn’t lose its heat. Otherwise, the batter won’t rise to its full potential! Return the tray to the oven immediately for a further 20-25 minutes.

When the pudding has risen to a deep goldenbrown, and the centre is looking set and a light brown, it is ready to serve. Serve immediately when the pudding is at its fluffiest, and pour over the red onion gravy.

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Food and Drink Devon
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