Chicken Style Stew and Vegan Yorkshire Pudding Recipe

10th January 2018
Chicken Stew Title screen

Despite the fact I’ve spent most of my adult life in different places, finally settling in Lancashire, I have Yorkshire in my bones. My late mama was Queen of the Yorkshire pudding so as such I have high expectations. Fast forward 3 years of veganism and many failed attempts later and I think I’ve finally found it, the holy grail, a vegan Yorkshire pudding recipe that doesn’t disappoint. Would it fool a blindfold Yorkshire home cook that she was eating her family recipe? Certainly not. Does it make my belly happy and content after all this time without so much as a sniff of a Yorkshire pud? Absolutely.

The stew in this story is almost secondary, merely offering the crispy, doughy Yorkshire pudding vessel reason to exist to scoop up all that thick, rich gravy. If you’re the type to shun anything remotely resembling a meat substitute then feel free to replace the Quorn with a tin of creamy butter beans and you’re good to go.

This is a slow cook recipe taking anywhere from 1.5 to 2 hours to do right. It’s difficult to put an exact time on it depending on the size and freshness of your vegetables and how much water and wine you see fit to add to stop it all from sticking. The aim is that the vegetables are fork tender and the barley is cooked but slightly chewy. It should thicken naturally but I also like to add vegetable gravy granules right at the end for extra flavour. If you wanted to speed it up you could simmer your barley in a separate pan of water and add to the stew once it’s cooked but if you have the time or the inclination then slow is the way to go.

A few tips about Yorkshire Pudding etiquette. I insist you invest in a proper metal baking tin, even better steal one from a Yorkshire kitchen. The rule is that the pudding tin should never be washed, merely wiped out with a paper towel after baking. I was so desperate to try this recipe that I decided to forgo this step and use what I had. Despite whatever the sales pitch is on silicone bakeware I just don’t think you can argue with tradition on this one.

The silicone tray I used just never seemed hot enough and as a result, I didn’t achieve the satisfying spit and sizzle as the batter hit the oil. Not only did I disappointingly miss out on those reminiscent ASMR feels but it also meant the batter didn’t start cooking immediately which results in a pudding that doesn’t rise as high or brown as golden on the outside.

Whatever your feelings on oil I’m here to tell you to forget everything you think you know and reach instead for good old-fashioned vegetable oil, you’ll thank me later. Nothing else will do, not coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil or vegan butter. They just simply won’t get hot enough without burning but may create smoke signals that can be seen as far as Yorkshire so the folks there in the know can laugh and point.

Another sneaky insider tip I have for you is to allow the batter to rest in the jug undisturbed for as long as possible whilst you get on with everything else. Just before pouring add 2 Tbsp cold water to the jug and give the batter a 2nd good whisk. With regards to the pour do it as quickly and carefully as you can, if you’ve followed my first tip then the oil will likely spit as you pour, be brave. Only fill the tray 1/3 to a maximum of 1/2 full to avoid the pudding becoming too heavy and collapsing in on itself. Finally, don’t ever, and I do mean EVER, open the oven door until cooking is finished or you risk ruining all that hard work and dedication.

The vegan Yorkshire pudding recipe I used is the one from Viva’s Vegan Recipe Club which you can find here.

Chicken Style Stew and Vegan Yorkshire Pudding

  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 2 Hours

Yields: 6 - 8 Servings

Chicken Stew Title screen

Ritual: Made with love
Character: Comfort food at it’s finest.
Essence: Tastes like mother used to make.

  • Chicken Style Stew
  • 1.5kg White Potatoes - Diced
  • 1 Medium Swede - Diced
  • 4 Large Carrots - Diced
  • 1 Large Red Onion - Diced
  • 1 Bunch Spring Onions - Chopped
  • 4 Cloves Garlic - Minced
  • 200g Dried Pearl Barley
  • 1 Bag Quorn Chicken Style pieces. Substitute with 1 tin of Butterbeans if preferred.
  • 1 Cup Frozen Peas
  • 2 Tbsps Vegetable Gravy Granules
  • 1 Glass Red Wine
  • 1 Vegetable Stock Cube
  • 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • 2 tsp Dried Mixed Herbs.
  • Yorkshire Puddings
  • Plain Flour
  • Baking Powder
  • Black Salt
  • Chickpea Aquafaba
  • Egg Replacer (I used Orgran brand)
  • Plant Milk
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Cold Water
  • Vegetable Oil

Mix the Yorkshire pudding batter following the measurements of the Vegan Recipe Club recipe. Pour the batter into a jug and allow to rest.

Fill a kettle full of water (approx 2 litres) and bring to the boil.

Peel and dice the swede and place in a deep, heavy-bottomed stockpot. Carefully pour over the boiling water and return to a rolling boil for 20 minutes.

Whilst the swede is boiling peel and dice the carrots, potatoes and onion. Finely mince the garlic.

Once the swede has boiled for 20 minutes add the carrots and continue to boil for a further 20 minutes.

After 20 minutes add the potatoes. Rinse the pearl barley thoroughly and stir into the pot. Allow to boil for a further 10 minutes then reduce to a simmer for approx 50 minutes or according to packet instructions.

Preheat the oven to 220C / 200C Fan / 425F / Gas Mark 7

Once the pan has reduced to a simmer (approx 1 hr in) add the onions and garlic.

Whilst simmering add the stock cube, smoked paprika, herbs and red wine and stir thoroughly.

Towards the end of cooking (approx 90 mins in) when the vegetables are tender, the stew has thickened and the barley is still slightly chewy add in the chopped spring onions, Quorn pieces, frozen peas and gravy granules and continue to cook until done.

Put the baking pan in the hot oven to heat up for 10 minutes before adding the vegetable oil and quickly returning to the oven.

Add 2 Tbsps cold water to the rested batter and whisk briskly.

Heat the oil for at least 10 minutes until shimmering, remove from the oven, closing the door as quickly as possible. Drip 1 drop of batter into the oil, if it's hot enough it should splutter. If it's ready quickly pour the batter into each hole, filling each to only 1/3 - 1/2 full. Return to the oven as quickly as possible. If the oil did not splutter return the tray to the oven for a further 5 minutes before proceeding.

Do not open the oven door again until the Yorkshires are cooked, risen and golden brown. This will take approximately 17-25 minutes depending on your oven. Keep a close eye on them through the door.

To assemble place the Yorkshire pudding or two in a bowl and spoon over the stew.

Serve with buttered, mustard cabbage and a spoon.

Do you know a Yorkshire pudding connoisseur? Make this recipe for them and let me know how they liked it in the comments below. Don’t forget to tag me @applefalltree to show me your version on Instagram.

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