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Recipe: Cayenne-Spiced Popovers from City Perch

Sherry Yard's quick popovers make a case for bringing back the freshly baked dinner roll.
A generous dusting of grated gruyere finishes City Perch's addictive popovers (pictured left). Photograph by Scott Suchman.

Former Wolfgang Puck pastry chef Sherry Yard oversees both sweets and savories at Rockville’s City Perch, and her lavish bread board is one of the best in the area. We fell hard for these eggy popovers, spiced with cayenne and sprinkled with gruyere. Yard suggests tweaking the popovers’ spices depending on what you’ll serve them with—she switches out cayenne for nutmeg when she’s pairing them with soup.

Makes 1 dozen

2½ cups flour

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper (add a full teaspoon if you want them really spicy)

1¼ teaspoons salt

4 eggs

2½ cups milk

6 ounces gruyere cheese, grated

Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees.

Coat a muffin pan with cooking spray, and set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cayenne pepper, and salt. Meanwhile, bring the milk to a simmer in a small sauce pan.

Crack the eggs into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk the eggs for 1 minute on high speed. Drop the speed to low, and slowly pour in ½ the warm milk. Then, with the mixer still running, slowly pour in ½ the flour mixture. Continue whisking with the remaining milk, followed by the remaining flour. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula and make sure the batter is evenly mixed and smooth.

Pour the batter into the prepared muffin pan, leaving about 1/4 inch unfilled. Sprinkle each popover generously with grated gruyere. Bake for 15 minutes. Rotate the muffin pan and reduce the heat to 350 degrees. Continue to bake for about 10 minutes or until dark golden and crusty with a slightly pudding-like center (they should not deflate). Remove from the oven and serve warm.

The popovers can be made up to 2 hours in advance. Reheat them by baking 4 to 5 minutes in a 350 degree oven.

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