Anyone doubting the presence of a higher being--culinarily speaking or otherwise--should make popovers.
With the same ingredients and resting time of a crêpe batter, popovers puff to comical proportions thanks to a blast of high heat that rapidly creates steam that then gets trapped inside a web of well-developed gluten (the point of that nap period).
Made savory, by stirring in thyme and Parmigiano, popovers tower over plain dinner rolls.
Made sweet, by basting them with butter and then rolling them in cinnamon sugar, they stand in as an easier, airier, and arguably, tastier doughnut.
Adding to a popover's divinity?
They will not wait for anyone--they demand to be eaten immediately and with abandon.
And because they don't store well at all, warm popovers ought never to be forsaken in the name of moderation.
Being thin isn't all that--just ask those crêpes.
Cinnamon Sugar Popovers
Adapted from A Sweet Spoonful
For the batter:
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 3 tsp. vegetable oil
For the cinnamon sugar coating:
- 1/3 cup sugar + 1 tsp. ground cinnamon, combined in a medium bowl
- 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
Adjust your oven's racks to the lowest position, removing one if necessary. Preheat it to 450 degrees.
In a blender, whir the eggs and milk together. Add the flour, melted butter, salt, cinnamon, and vanilla, blending until frothy, about one minute. Allow the batter to rest for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, pour 1/2 tsp. of oil into the 6 wells of a popover pan--or the outer 8 wells of a 12-count muffin tin (leaving the center 4 empty). When 10 more minutes of the batter's naptime remain, put the oiled pan into the oven to heat up.
After those 10 minutes, remove the pan from the oven and swiftly divide the batter amongst the oiled wells, filling each just beyond half full.
Return the pan to the oven where you are to leave it, completely undisturbed, for 20 minutes. Next, lower the heat to 350 degrees and continue to bake, laying nary a finger on the oven door, until the popovers have browned and popped up and over, about 10-15 minutes more.
Gingerly lift each billowy treat out and onto a wire rack for their butter bath and sugar shower. Use a pastry brush to coat the entirety of the popover's surface with the melted butter and then roll it around in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Eat and enjoy without delay.
Note: I find one popover to be too little, but two to be too much, so a family of four can comfortably finish all six when they are in their prime by splitting the last two in half. Some may even emerge already partially cleaved, resembling a certain body part (see photo), triggering fits of giggles.