Mile High Chocolate Flecked Popovers and Bad Boy First Love Part 6 | Parsley, Sage, and Sweet

Mile High Chocolate Flecked Popovers and Bad Boy First Love Part 6

February 28, 2012 at 7:00 am | Posted in Appetizers, Breads, Breakfast, Daring Bakers, Dessert, Dinner, Fruit | 58 Comments
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This is what I made for this month’s Daring Bakers Challenge..Popovers, but not just any popovers, popovers with flecks of chocolate in them. Cool, huh?  Even though you can barely see the flecks until you split them open.

Mile High Chocolate Flecked Popovers

Below was my original plan for this months Daring Baker Challenge.  That original plan is now known as minor failure.


I have a tendency to experiment at the last-minute..always confident that it’ll work out – no problem!  More than half the time, there’s some kind of problem that I can either fix in time, or I end up making something else – quickly.  I’ve always been a last minute person and  I’d like to say I thrive under pressure, but I’d be lying.  When it doesn’t work out the way I hoped it would..major potty mouth may ensue.

My plan was to add chocolate chunks, then pipe peanut butter cheesecake batter from this recipe, into a really great banana bread batter.  It worked as far as taste, texture and flavor went, but it sunk in the middle because I think I used too much peanut butter cheesecake batter, and frankly, it wasn’t aesthetically pleasing – which is pretty important when you’re a food blogger.  BUT, I will have a refined recipe for it eventually.

SO, when you have only a few hours to pull something off, something quick is your saving grace.  What better than popovers?  Honestly, who doesn’t love popovers?  Not only are they easy to put together, but the dramatic appearance usually elicits oohs and aahs when you pull them from the oven.  Just look at how tall and whimsical these are!

Mile High Chocolate Flecked Popovers

There’s a supposed secret to getting them this tall and crazy poofy, well, two secrets really, maybe three – ok, four.  One, baking powder – just a little bit.  Two – bread flour instead of AP flour.  Three – room temperature eggs and milk. Four - letting the batter rest an hour before filling and baking

I usually use a simple formula of 1 cup AP flour, 1 cup milk, 3 eggs and a pinch of salt – foolproof, beautiful popovers..every.single.time.  However, after trying this new recipe,, and seeing how some of my popovers did the crazy dance once they rose above the rims (maybe it was the chocolate?), has certainly made me want to use it again.  It’s amazing how much higher they would have risen had I not added the chocolate.  There are photos of the popovers at the linked recipe, so you can see how high.

Another key to tall, crazy and dramatic popovers is giving them some interior drying time in the oven.  You poke a tiny hole in the side of each popover (the bottom part – I call it the ‘stand’) to let the steam escape.  If you don’t do this, they will eventually slump and the interior will be soggy.

Once you pierce them, give them 5 to 10 more minutes in a low oven on a baking sheet to dry.  They will now hold shape, no shlumping and no soggy interiors, just crispy on the outside, and fluffy on the inside with lots of wonderful air pockets.

Mile High Chocolate Flecked Popovers

I froze some grated chocolate, tossed it in flour (shaking off the excess in a strainer), and added it to the batter just before I filled the wells of the pan.  I love the slight speckled effect and the streaks of chocolate on the inside, but most importantly, they’re tasty – like pulling apart a pain au chocolate, with less chocolate (and a lot less butter!)  Those little bits of chocolate dispersed throughout the fluffy interior and crispy, golden exterior, will make you really happy.

The Daring Bakers’ February 2012 host was Lis (my wifeypoo). Lis stepped in last-minute and challenged us to create a quick bread we could call our own. She supplied us with a base recipe and shared some recipes she loves from various websites, encouraging us to build upon them and create new flavor profiles.  That’s right up my culinary alley.  I never fully follow a recipe.

I served these with leftover vanilla bean cream cheese spread and fruit.  You can serve them with whatever you want, or just eat as is.  I wanted to eat them all.  I didn’t.  Shock.

Once again, it’s time to continue my ‘Bad Boy First Love’ series.  Series?  Yep, that’s what it’s come to because so many details have risen from the hallows of my brain.  If I tried to finish it off in one or two posts, it would swallow my whole blog.

Mile High Chocolate Flecked Popovers

NO IDEA.  Use your imagination.

For the 5th time, if you’re just tuning in for the first time – Part One is HERE, Part Two is HERE , Part Three is HERE, Part Four is HERE, and Part Five is HERE.

After I broke out of my happy stupor (much, much, much better than the year of sad stupor, obviously), I invited the girls to stop by our glorious beach penthouse to hang out with us.  One of the sisters had a new boyfriend from upstate NY, and he was coming down.  Plus, a few of their friends were coming by, could they bring them too?

“Sure!” *there’s plenty of room in our 10 by 12 ft kitchen with a couch!*

I ran back to our luxury pad, almost busting the rickety stairs as I stomped up them rapidly – man, I was one happy chick.

I threw open the door excitedly.  The girls were setting up the place and it actually looked cute..for a kitchen with a couch.  We would share the bunk bed levels, two on each level.  A little squished, but no big whoop.  The bathroom was the size of a closet.  This could be a problem with 4 girls, 4 blowdryers, 3 curling irons, loads of lotions, oils, deodorants, make-up, powders…not to mention all of our shampoos, conditioners and cream rinses.  Yep..we were girly girls, and a schedule would have to be worked out.

We decided that make-up and blow drying could be done in the kitchen with mirrors, since there were plenty of outlets, so if someone had already staked claim of the bathroom mirror, that’s what we’d do.  We definitely wouldn’t be cooking in this kitchen.

“He’s here guys, he’s working on the pier” I said as calmly as I could..my heart doing yet another somersault as the words spilled from my mouth.

They all stopped what they were doing.  Then a barrage of hugs, high-fives and happy exclamations.

One friend took me by the shoulders and stared deep into my eyes.

“Lisa, just think..after a year, you’re going to SEE HIM TONIGHT!”

Tonight?  Uh uh..no way. Not only was I nervous he might not want me anymore, but I wanted to postpone the possibility that he might be seeing someone for the next night, after I was able to spend some time on the beach to get some color.  I wanted to at least look hot for the inevitable throw-up and die.  Dreamboat was too gorgeous not to have someone.  I was suddenly convinced that would be the outcome.

I expressed this to them.  They disagreed and tried to convince me otherwise, but I wasn’t budging – NO WAY.

We showered and dressed.  To further prove my point that there was no way I’d set foot on the pier that night, I put on a pair of raggedy cut-off jean shorts and a faded red t-shirt.  Not ‘first sight in a year’ attire, by any stretch.  I let my hair dry naturally, shaggy and messy.  This would prevent me from even sneaking to take a peek in fear he might see me this way.

The pounding up the steps was loud as our local girlfriends, their friends and one of the new boyfriends came-a-calliin.  They had bags of cheap wine and a case of beer (the boyfriend from upstate NY was 21).  Our kitchen with the couch was like a sardine can with a few stray fishies seeping into the bedroom.


I guess we were having a party.  Good – no boardwalk.

I needed to relax since I was now absolutely convinced I’d be rejected for leaving him without a word, or even worse, another girl.

After half a paper cup of apple wine, since we didn’t have any Baccarat crystal wine glasses on hand, I was feeling pretty relaxed. Another half cup, I was buzzing.  I’m a lightweight aka a cheap date.  I hold booze about as well as a plastic bag holds cement blocks.

Soon I started to hear buzzes of..

“Let’s do something, go somewhere, it’s too crowded in here and it’s only 9 o ‘clock.”

Lots of affirmatives.  I just sat there, loopy and mum, waiting to hear anything BUT, boardwalk.

“Let’s hit the boardwalk!”

No.

“Yeah..let’s walk around and just see where it takes us.”

No.

OH, please, I know where it’ll take us, but there I was within minutes, walking up the ramp to the boardwalk with everyone.  It was either that or stay home alone.  Besides, there were so many places, so many things to do, that the Casino Pier could easily be avoided.  We could go to the other pier further down if they feel like going on rides, although the rides were pretty lame on that one, outside of the log flume.

When we hit the part of the boardwalk near the carousel, next to the Casino Pier, I inwardly pleaded with everyone to keep moving.

Just keep going..just keep going…don’t even look at the pier..nobody, please!*

Suddenly a brouhaha of voices broke through my attempt to guide everyone past and away from the pier via telekinesis.

“OMG!  Hiiii!  What are you guys doing here??”

I looked up.  Two of my friends had run straight into some upperclassmen from school who had just graduated and some who had graduated the year before, about 8 of them.

There was excitement, disbelief, like, OMG, we live in the same town and we just ran into each other at the beach, 2 hours from the ‘same’ town we live in!!  This is so amazing, so unexpected, so rare!  Yeah, okay, if this was Paris, I could see it, but come on.

Not only that..none us of knew any of these people very well, outside of muddled ‘Hi’s’ in the hallway at school or the occasional 5-minute bathroom chat;

“I love that lip color, is it MAC?”

But, since we lived in the same town and we ran into each other in another town two hours away, naturally, we had to hang out for a bit!  This is just SO COOL!  We’re from the same town and here we in another town, so now we’re friends for a few hours!

Yeah, the fear of running into Dreamboat looking like I did, made me a little cranky.

Mile High Chocolate Flecked Popovers

Of course, they wanted to go on the Casino Pier and hit the rides.

“SHIT.” I muttered audibly

They all looked at me.

A cacophony of..”What’s wrong?  “Do you not like the rides?”  “Do you get sick on rides?  “OMG, I used to throw up every time I rode the Jet Star and…” came shooting at me like bullets.

Our new hometown besties were hurling so many questions and stories at me, I started to feel really woozy.  Finally, with a look of approval from me, one of my friends chimed in and started to give a quick synopsis of my situation – then another chimed in, and soon the Full Monty was out and swinging like a big, fat pendulum.

One of the hometown guys, whom I actually had a crush on for about 3 days when I was 14, stepped forward, very close to me.  He smelled like pot.  Scratch that, reeked of pot.

“As a guy, I’m going to give you a little advice.  We don’t care if you’re not tan or wearing a ratty t-shirt, okay?”  THEN…

“If he isn’t with someone already, tonight could be the night he meets someone he really likes.  There could be another you on that pier this very moment, scoping him out or vice versa.”

That second gem of advice hit me like a boulder to the cranium.  Suddenly I was completely sober. This was the sagest advice ever.  My fear was quickly replaced by panic, and  I needed to see him now, ugly or not.

“Let’s go” I said to everyone, leading the way to the pier.  I was an apple wine induced General Patton leading my troops into a life or death situation, except the only life or death situation was mine – after throwing up, if necessary.

I turned left onto the pier – away from the Tilt -A-Whirl.  I needed time to work up to this….

Part 7 coming in a few very short days!

Chocolate Flecked Popovers
1 recipe for these popovers – dijon mustard omitted plus 2/3 cup grated or finely chopped chocolate, frozen, then tossed in flour, shaken in a strainer, and stirred into the batter.

If you have a moment, please check out some fantastic quick breads created by other Daring Bakers members, by clicking on the links to their blogs, HERE.  For some great quick bread recipes that Lis compiled for the challenge, click HERE.

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58 Comments »

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  1. I’d never heard of a popover before – but the basic recipe is pretty much the same as what we call Yorkshire puddings here in the UK. Does anyone else know if they are the same thing? They’re a savoury dish though, that you usually have with roast beef – I really want to know what they’d taste like with chocolate added!

    • Yorkshire pudding usually have the meat drippings as their liquid – that’s the biggest difference between them and popovers. Popovers are made in all kinds of flavors in addition to the traditional plain “eggy” version.

      Lisa – these truly look fantastic. You know, we all leave comments on blogs “lovely, I think I’ll try it” or whatever – I WILL make these, scrounging the fridge now – do I have enough eggs to just go for it right now? Lovely.

      You don’t yet have a Pinterest button – otherwise I’d pin it right up to the recipes I’ll make (can do without your having a button, but to do so for some folks would be stepping on copyright toes – so I’ve cut back to just pinning folks with a button. WP added Pinterest to the choices you can add to “share” at the bottom of your posts. Email me if you need info.

      • Maggie – Thank you for all that information! I added the Pin button. I need to join Pinterest myself! I’m just afraid I’ll never get anything done!! LOL

  2. The popovers look perfect, I made cherry popovers as well, I like how you put in chocolate into the batter. To me popovers are basically “Yorkshire puddings”. I love how they have a dry crisp crust and the interior is soft and tender. Sorry to hear about the banana bread (any experimenting is always eventually worth it I feel) not working out. I love that interior shot the crumb is stunning. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

    • Aud and Caroline – Aren’t Yorkshire Puddings more eggy and less crisp, even prior to soaking up the meat juices?

  3. your popovers look amazing, especially the interior shots! wish i had a couple of those for breakfast this morning! but that banana loaf thing?!? sounds friggin insane! i’d eat if, even it it wasn’t super pretty!

    • I’m going to make it look pretty…even if it takes me all damn day when I do it lol

  4. I am not quite sure I have ever had popovers but they sure look great. Your photos are fantastic and I love the popover with the panhandle. As for your story how devious of you to leave us all hanging at the pier wondering…. Funny stuff what went on in your mind and convincing yourself that he had someone else… how teenagerish and quite entertaining. Well done – when’s the made for TV movie?

  5. Perfect popovers! They look amazing.

    Once again, I enjyoed reading your story and I’m looking forwar to reading part 7.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  6. I’ve never made a popover before but now that you’ve added chocolate to one, I’ll just have to give it a try!

  7. Wow I love all the crazy forms, so originall! I know what u mean,.. half my try outs end up totaly differently then planned. some experiments at times are useless. Tried to make chikoo jam that day, well that fruit was sticking like chickle not like jam. But its fun to try out new things, right? its nice to play around with ideas, to create something new.

    thx for sharing! =)

  8. These are some beautiful popovers! Mine always slump and taste eggy wet. So glad you gave all those tips – looks like I need to dry them out!

  9. I think your popovers are the most beautiful I have ever seen! Thanks for sharing the tips! Of course I’m bookmarking! Can’t wait for the next chapter!

  10. These popovers look amazing! I really love popovers but I’ve only had the ‘savory’ version – which is delicious too, but I’d totally love to try out the sweet version! Yum!

  11. Caroline:
    They are basically the same thing, except Yorkshire pudding is nice and spongy and popovers are dryer.

    I myself (having British Grandparents) prefer Yorkshire puddings!

  12. Loads of great advice for making popovers. I think I only made some once. Love the idea of chocolate flecks. You are on a chocolate rampage right now ha ha. Impatient for part 7.

  13. Your popovers look adorable! Love the texture inside! I’ve been wanting to make popovers for a while, but couldn’t muster it this month.
    You really know how to end your posts on a cliffhanger! I can’t wait for the next part!

  14. Those popovers look absolutely divine! I loved all the tips you gave. I’ve never had a popover or even knew what they were for that matter. I definitely need to experiment with them soon. Or just makes these delicious looking creations!

  15. I am going to have to make popovers this week after seeing everybody’s fantastic versions- including yours!

  16. I’ve never made, or even eaten, a popover:( Yours look classically beautiful, well, except for one:) That peanut butter cheesecake filling sounds amazing, no matter what it looks like.
    I REALLY want to see how your story turns out! :)

  17. I love popovers and am now really regretting not making them for this challenge. I love the crazy shapes you got. I’ll be watching for part 7 of the teenage love saga.

  18. Look at these beauties! I think I can honestly say that I’ve never actually had a popover. Need to change that someday. Chocolate is always a welcome addition!

  19. I have never made popovers and I’m going to try your recipe. They look amazing. How much chocolate did you use?I love how Daring you are. Your bread sounds delicious.

  20. The popovers are amazing! I think this is the first time I’ve seen ones that didn’t deflate once out of the oven, will definitely try your recipe.
    I’m enjoying the bad boy first love series so much, I wait for them :))
    Excellent job for this month’s DB!

  21. Love the photos! Your popovers rose beautifully and sound delicious.

  22. Gorgeous and scrumptious!

  23. These are gorgeous. The height is amazing. Hanging on for part 7….

  24. Seriously?! Seven parts?! You are killing me!! :)

    Also, holy crap! I never knew you could make pop-overs without a special pan!! I have wasted YEARS not making these!!!

  25. I really love these popovers – thanks for the tips!

  26. There’s MORE? Come on, Lisa… You can’t do this to us… the next installment better be here soon! :) Love the popovers! One of my favorite things to eat… never tried them with chocolate flecks though. Love the height and texture of these… I must try your recipe! And thanks for the tips :)

  27. Chocolate popovers – BRILLIANT! Such a fantastic idea, I’m totally making these. I can’t believe how tall and beautiful they are! (And I love how your story is punctuated with gratuitous shots of chocolatey popover, lol!)

  28. Wonderful shots of those popovers and in the one picture I just want to test that little extension, you wont mind will you, just a little taste. BAM

  29. Lisaaaa! Argh this is torture :) I love it.

    And I looooove the idea of peanut butter cheesecake batter and chocolate, who cares if it sunk. Seriously! The popovers look amazing too, I think I’ve made popovers only once before and no way were they that tall.

    I finally posted my DB challenge today.

  30. A-mazing! I’d never heard of popovers before seeing them on yours and Jamie’s (Life’s a Feast) blogs. They look awesome though, and like some of your other readers said they do remind me of a lovely crispy Yorkshire pudding, just sweet. I love the photo with the cross section of a popover – sooo good!

  31. I so want these! I never tried popovers! Your pics are perfect!

  32. The popovers sound wonderful with the chocolate bits dispersed throughout, yum! Good advices from that guy, can’t wait till the part 7!

  33. Part 7?????!!! You tease ;) Anyhoo….I LOVE how perfectly puffed your popovers are!!! Stunning. And I had a flop, too, with my first loaf….that’s what happens when I try to innovate :) Fun to bake along with you again this month!

  34. Those popovers look taller than me. I mean, I’m short, but not shorter than a popover … surely? They’re so fluffy and the chocolate flecks are a stroke of genius. DELICIOUS!

    Aha, your Bad Boy series is now officially longer than a lot of television series in the UK. I don’t know what I’ll do when it’s over. :(

  35. You are so good at letting us hang on for the end of the story :) I love these popovers they sound so good, wish I had one right now. Great tips on getting the highest popovers. Your banana bread fail sounded good. I made this apple ginger citrus bread but was too excited to get it out of the pan and it completely fell apart, so plan B is up on my blog. I also tried to be in your chocolate yeast bread challenge and it messed up too but of well maybe next time. Hope you are doing well Lisa xoxox Suz

  36. That popover with the handle is mine!! Nobody else call it.

    I love, love, love your story. :)

  37. WOW, these popovers look great, like how they raised differently and the inside shot with chocolate and holes are just amazing.
    Hope you are having a great week Lisa:)

  38. Lisa thanks for all of your tips with popovers! They look like tricky yet worthwhile little things to make! And I was so excited to see another installment of Bad Boy Love. I can’t wait for episode 7! :D

  39. I came here for the pop overs and ended up reading all your bad boy love stories. You have a great knack for writing. Looking forward to part 7!

    And lovely pop overs too:)

  40. Enough with the cliffhangers! Ha ha. I am so hooked on this story.

    And why have I never thought to put chocolate flecks in popovers or drizzle them with chocolate or introduce them to chocolate in any way, shape, or form? That needs to change!

  41. Wow, I need to put popovers on my bucket list….your popovers of course! They seriously look gorgeous:-) Bummer the banana bread did not turn out, I think the idea sounded pretty fantastic! Sending hugs:-)

  42. Ha Ha Ha Ha I cannot believe how you are dragging this story on and on and killing me! At the end of each part I find my heart pounding! Nuts! How will this turn out? And the popovers are incredible! Perfect! I haven’t made popovers in literally years! The recipe I used to use in college to perfection was a huge flop the one time I made them in France so I never made them again. I must try this recipe and follow all of your tips because yours are stunning!!! Amazing! Love the chocolate flecks! Gorgeous!

  43. Hi Lisa, Just “popping” in to see your latest creation. These popovers are incredible…what a great job and thanks for the tips! I think they are a fantastic candidate for chocolate, and you proved that! My sister makes wonderful popovers, which she generally serves with prime rib. Her husband is British and she learned to bake these from him. I begged her for her recipe a while back so I could make them and post…obviously, I’ve not got around to them yet. I’m going to come back to catch up on your story…should make a good read in bed.. Thanks!

  44. Chocolate flecked popovers!
    You are a genious Lisa! I can’t wait to try it out.
    And that banana bread!I would eat this with a big smile on my face, pretty or not, it sounds like a heavenly combo

  45. Popovers look delicious, so does your story!I’m pretty much like you, in trying out things at the last minute with confidence and sometimes it works BUT sometimes I have to be creative at the very last minute!

  46. Beautiful chocolate flecks in your perfect popovers. I need to give this recipe a go because it is flawless. I like how that one turned out in the last photo…super cool:)So the story has another part and we don’t know really what happens yet. Suspenseful and intriguing. Have you considered writing YA love series? You seriously should:)

  47. Lisa – it is addicting but a great visual record of things you like.

  48. Perfect popovers! Thanks for the tips – I need them, last time I made popovers they didn’t pop ;) I do hope that after you’re finished torturing us, that you’ll publish this teen heart throb novelette in its entirety for the future enjoyment of others!

  49. Hi! I have a suggestion for your banana bread.

    Instead of piping it in as you did.

    Why not do a layer of the banana bread, a layer of filling, and so forth.

    It would cook better being distributed more and you would still have the wow of the filling.

    Charlie

  50. Hey Lis!! I just realized I missed this post! No wonder I was a little confused with Bad Boy Part 7!! haha… anyway! Wonderful looking popovers! I love it when you see your bread rise so beautifully! It’s like a huge sense of accomplishment! Your first idea seems like a great one too so I can’t wait to see that entry on it! the picture captioned, “NO IDEA. Use your imagination.” made me LOLed!! heehee

  51. You are killing me! I am racing to Part 7!!

  52. Those look sky high! After my many attempts at making yorkshire pudding, only to result in hockey pucks, I’ll have to try the popovers.

  53. I love the way your popovers look! Thanks for the secret ingredients, I’ll for sure have to give them a try one day!

  54. This recipe I really like are great cook, I like you.
    Congratulations for having such good taste
    I appreciate you made me a visit.
    I send you a warm hug
    Vicente Sagunto


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