Depending on how old you were in 1984, the title of this post may be lost on you. And if it is, ultimately that just makes you cooler than me. But if you were anywhere between the ages of, oh, say, 8 and 35, you might know of the wildly popular and spectacularly terrible movie about breakdancing to which I refer: Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo.
I was 11 in December 1984 when I saw Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo. I had already seen the prequel to this fine film, Breakin', which had been released the summer of the same year--clearly the producers were all too aware that the window of popularity for two such ridiculous films was fairly small. I think even at the age of 11, I realized this movie franchise was a bomb, and by early 1985 I had moved on to slightly better cinematic works such as The Goonies.
In any case, in our house, when something requires a sequel or a do-over, it's often referred to as (blank) 2: Electric Boogaloo. And this morning, I decided it was time for Popover 2: Electric Boogaloo.
You may recall that a few months ago I attempted to make popovers with incredibly poor results. They emerged as homely little stumps, which, while they tasted perfectly fine, did not come close to meeting the standards set for me by the fashionable and highly mockable Rotunda Room.
My post about popovers--or flopovers, as the husband dubbed them-- elicited quite a bit of helpful advice from readers, not the least of which was: get a popover pan. Lo and behold, a popover pan was given to me for my birthday in November. With the right equipment in hand, I just needed a new recipe.
I decided this time to go with nerdy and reliable Baking Illustrated. I love this cookbook, and it has yet to disappoint me. The recipe differed slightly from the Mark Bittman recipe I used earlier: it called for vegetable oil, resting the batter before baking, and using a real popover pan.
Once the batter was assembled and rested, I poured it into the preheated pan. Because I am poor at eyeballing things, I only filled five of the six cups before I ran out of batter. But because the batter begins to cook the moment you pour it, there was no fixing my error. Into the oven they went.
And 35 minutes later, this is how they emerged.
The husband came over to check them out and after inhaling the lovely, bready scent and admiring their crusty little balloon bodies, he turned to me with dead shark eyes and said, "I'm going to eat at least 2.5 of those."
He may be bigger and taller than me, but I can go head-to-head with him on any baked good (perhaps not something to brag about, but the irrefutable truth). "Mm hmm," I murmured sweetly, "2.5 is exactly what you'll get."
(adapted from Baking Illustrated)
1 cup whole milk
1 cup flour
1/2 t. salt
1 T. unsalted butter, melted
1T. vegetable oil
Whisk the eggs and milk together in a large bowl until well combined, about 20 seconds. In a separate smaller bowl, whisk together flour and salt. Add the flour mixture to the egg and milk mixture and stir with a spoon or spatula just until combined--it will still be lumpy. Add the butter and whisk for about 30 seconds until smooth and bubbly. Let rest for 30 minutes at room temperature.
Meanwhile, pour 1/2 t. vegetable oil into each popover cup (pan should have six cups). Adjust the oven rack to the lowest position, place the pan in the oven, and heat to 450.
Once the batter is rested and the oven is heated, pour the batter into a 4-cup measuring cup or other cup with a spout. Remove pan from the oven and working quickly, divide the batter evenly among the cups. Put the pan back in the oven and bake for 20 minutes, without opening the oven door. Reduce the heat to 350 and bake for another 15-18 minutes (I removed mine after 15), until golden brown. Remove from the oven, dump out onto a wire rack, let cool for 2-3 minutes, then eat immediately.