The last few weeks have gone past in a bit of a blur. I moved back to my home city of Dublin after nearly five years away, started college/work and have been finding my feet. I suppose it is appropriate enough then that this post is a quick and easy recipe using a very traditional Irish ingredient.
Black pudding is not (as I have seen on some websites) a dessert, but a blood sausage traditionally eaten for breakfast. Fry-ups of sausage, eggs, rashers (bacon), black and white pudding are a pretty traditional Irish breakfast, although not one people have every day or even every week. There are some other more controversial components like tomatoes, mushrooms, baked beans, hash browns fried bread or potato farls (a kind of fried potato bread), and everyone has their strong opinions on these. More recently, these have been adapted into the breakfast roll, a terrifying Irish delicacy involving cramming all of the above into a baguette along with ketchup and brown sauce. Managing to eat one without most of it ending up down your front requires a combination of ingenuity,flexibility and luck that few possess. I’ve never given it a go, but have seen better people than me try and fail.
I’m not a huge fan of fry-ups, but I really missed black pudding while I was away. It is quite spicy, a bit like haggis, and utterly delicious as long as you’re not too squeamish about what it’s made of. This recipe was adapted from one by an Irish chef, Paul Flynn, using things we had around the kitchen. The butter beans were a bit mushed when they came out of the can, so it ended up a bit like a hash, but it tasted great. You could use any kind of beans for this. Morcilla or boudin noir would be good substitutes for black pudding, or any kind of strong sausage. This makes four small tapas type portions.
- 1x 400g tin of butter beans, drained
- 100g of black pudding, chopped into smallish cubes
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 tbs toasted pine nuts
- 2 tbs sultanas
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- 1 tablespoon snipped chives
- Cider, white wine or sherry vinegar, to taste (lemon juice would work too)
- Olive oil
- Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat.
- Saute the onion for 3-4 minutes until softened.
- Add the garlic for an extra 2 minutes.
- Toss in the beans, black pudding, and sultanas and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
- Remove from the heat, toss in the pinenuts and herbs.
- Dress with a bit of vinegar to sharped according to your taste.
- Drizzle with a bit more olive oil if you like.
- Season and serve warm.