Have you ever enjoyed a salad with a dressing that was so luscious, you just wished you could lick the plate? That’s why I like to have a little piece of bread alongside my salad. Something to help me sop up the dressing and juices.
These mini cheese and herb popovers are perfect for doing just that! Small, light and airy, these little popovers are flavored with the subtle, earthy flavor of fried sage leaves and the sweet, nutty flavor of Gruyere cheese. They are a perfect accompaniment to any salad.
When I think of sage, I think of stuffing. And stuffing has me thinking of Thanksgiving! So I tend to cook with it more in the fall and winter months.
I know these leaves still look supple. But they are actually quite crispy and brittle! Light and crunchy, the flavor of sage mellows when you fry it. Hit them up with a pinch of salt. And don’t worry, they become even more crisp as they dry.
It’s so much easier to chop when it’s crunchy. This popover recipe only requires a tablespoon or two of fried sage. But I fried the entire package of sage, just to have some extra to toss into my salads.
These little popovers, made in mini muffin pans, are so easy and forgiving. With regular popovers, you can just about expect that they will deflate, even though they taste just as good. These mini popovers hold their shape very well.
These herb and cheese popovers will go with any salad, any time of the year. Great for dipping in soup, too!
You can use any type of herb or cheese that you wish, really. Rosemary & parmesan would be great. Or how about chives & cheddar?
So if you’ve been intimidated to make popovers in the past, you’ll find this recipe so easy. Just resist the urge to open the oven door before the end of the baking time, and they are practically foolproof!
- FOR THE FRIED SAGE:
- 1 bunch of sage (about 20-30 leaves, they will be different sizes)
- ¼ cup of olive oil
- kosher salt
- FOR THE POPOVERS:
- 1 cup of flour
- 1 cup of milk
- 2 large eggs
- 2 Tablespoons of butter, melted & divided
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- ¼ teaspoon of ground pepper
- 1½ -2 Tablespoons of chopped fried sage leaves
- You will need 2 (12 cup) mini muffin tins
- Make the batter first, and let it rest at room temperature for an hour.
- In a blender, mix the flour, milk, eggs, 1 Tablespoon of the melted butter, ½ teaspoon of salt and ¼ teaspoon of pepper.
- While the batter is resting, go ahead and fry the sage.
- In a medium saute or frying pan, heat ¼ cup of olive oil over medium high heat until hot. (I usually run my hand under tap water and sprinkle it into the pan. If it sizzles and sputters, it's ready!)
- Working quickly, fry 4 or 5 leaves at a time, flipping once. You only need to leave them in 2-3 seconds on each side.
- Remove them to a paper towel lined plate and sprinkle immediately with a pinch of salt.
- The leaves will crisp even more as they dry.
- If the leaves turn brown, turn down your heat.
- Once they are dried, chop enough to make 2 Tablespoons and save the rest for later use.
- When you are ready to make the popovers, preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
- Place your 2 mini muffin pans on a baking sheet and place that in the oven for 10-15 minutes.
- Then carefully remove the baking sheet, and using a pastry brush, brush each muffin cup with your remaining melted butter.
- Pour the batter into a large measuring cup with a spout.
- Whisk in the fried sage.
- Fill each muffin cup ⅔ full.
- Sprinkle the grated cheese evenly over each cup.
- Bake for 10 minutes at 450 degrees F.
- DO NOT OPEN THE DOOR!!!
- But lower the heat to 350 degrees F. and bake an additional 8 minutes.
- USE YOUR OVEN LIGHT TO CHECK FOR BROWNING.
- When the tops are golden brown, turn off the oven and leave the popovers in for another minute or two.
- Carefully remove from the pan and serve immediately.