Black Pudding, Apple and Kale Salad

by Kristin on October 9, 2012

“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.” — George Eliot

I love October. The temperature is still on the pleasant side of chilly — crisp and invigorating as opposed to the cold damp of wintertime that settles in your bones — but still brisk enough to justify lighting fires in the woodstove at night. It brings out my inner homebody, with that sense of hunkering down for the winter that will be here soon. The pump house is stacked with logs for the stove, the lawn has been mowed one last time and my oversized wool scarf is ready to go at the first sign of frost.

When it comes to appetites, though, it can be a funny month — too cold for summertime’s light dinners but not cold enough yet for the rib-sticking stews, pot pies and comfort foods that will see us through the winter. There’s still time for one more salad, and this is the perfect salad for an Irish autumn. The black pudding and kale give it an earthy base note, the apples balance it out with a bit of sweetness and the blue cheese adds a salty, creamy tang. Serve with an Irish stout to play up the dark earthiness of the black pudding or an artisan cider if you want to complement the sweetness of the apples. Eating in front of a cozy fire is optional.

Black Pudding, Apple and Kale Salad

Serves 2

The idea for the salad came from the apple chapter in Nigel Slater’s Tender and the salad dressing is from BBC Good Food. Some chopped toasted hazelnuts, walnuts or pecans would be a good addition for a bit of crunch.

for the salad:
rapeseed or olive oil
350 g (12 oz) black pudding, sliced
knob of butter
3 eating apples, cored and cut into thick slices (I used Braeburn)
50 g (2 oz) blue cheese, crumbled (try Boyne Valley Blue if you can get your hands on it)
100 g (4 oz) kale, tough centre ribs removed and leaves cut into thin strips
salt and freshly ground black pepper
crusty bread, to serve

for the honey mustard dressing:
6 tablespoons sunflower oil or a light olive oil
3 tablespoons cider vinegar (Llwellyn’s cider vinegar or balsamic cider vinegar would be perfect)
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon honey
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
salt and freshly ground black pepper

To make the dressing, whisk all the ingredients together until combined, or place in a screw top jar and shake well. Any leftovers will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.

To make the salad, heat some oil in a pan over a medium heat. Add the black pudding and cook for a few minutes on each side, until crisp. Remove from the pan and roughly chop (or just break it up with the back of a wooden spoon directly in the pan), then add it back to the pan and cook for a few minutes more, until the outer edges are crispy. Remove from the pan and set aside.

Add a knob of butter to the same pan. When it has melted, add in the apple slices. Cook for a few minutes on each side, until they turn light golden and soft. Remove from the pan and set aside. Add another slick of oil to the pan if it needs it, raise the heat a bit and add in the kale. Cook for a few minutes, stirring now and then, just until the kale wilts and turns bright green.

Put the kale in a bowl and drizzle with a bit of the honey mustard dressing. Toss in the black pudding, apples and the crumbled blue cheese and season with salt and pepper, then divide the salad between two plates. Serve with thick slices of crusty bread and a good stout or cider to wash it down.

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Amee October 9, 2012 at 12:15 pm

Now you are talking my language – *runs off to order black pudding in the post*

Reply

Kristin October 9, 2012 at 8:37 pm

Would that be Sir Jack’s pudding you’re ordering, by any chance? :)

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Amee October 9, 2012 at 10:54 pm

Is there another one? I think not…

Reply

Kristin October 11, 2012 at 6:54 am

Touché!

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Allison October 10, 2012 at 9:44 pm

any suggestion on where to buy black pudding in the states? i’ve looked, to no avail…

Reply

Kristin October 13, 2012 at 11:21 am

Would you believe Amazon.com sells it? But don’t buy the black pudding in a tin – I had no idea it even came that way! Get the fresh kind.

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Christina October 24, 2012 at 6:30 pm

It sounds great, thanks, I will try it on the weekend :) (a huge fan of black pudding)

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Kristin November 2, 2012 at 8:15 am

Hope you enjoyed it, Christina!

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Magda (@MagdasCauldron) November 3, 2012 at 8:30 pm

I saw this recipe in the Nigel’s book, but then was busy and totally forgot about it. Each time I buy veggies I end up with kale and then have no idea what to do with it, but this is perfect idea and my boyfriend will love it.

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Kristin November 9, 2012 at 6:59 am

I’ve been making a lot of salads with kale this autumn. Hope you and your boyfriend enjoy this one!

Reply

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