Usually we do something for Valentine’s day. This year we were going to nest under a duvet, watch films and eat sushi, drink wine and enjoy.
Except that Himself came down with the lurgy I’d had the previous week, was off sick, and wouldn’t have had the energy to even think about what lovers do on Valentine’s Day.
So I grumbled a bit, decided I was still going to cook him something tasty, and filling, and comfort food, and defrosted the belly pork from Riverford. I covered it in oil, sprinkled salt over it, ground some pepper, and whacked it into the oven a la Hugh FW’s meat book, with a good hot sizzle, and then turned down the temperature. I served it with mashed potato which was heavily mustard flavour, I know he likes that, steamed cabbage, carrots and apples cooked into a chunky sauce with sage, brown sugar and a splash of brandy. It wasn’t my best meal, but the crackling was excellent, the pork was delicious (and I’m not generally a pork fan, if I must have it then it HAS to be organic). And the mash was VERY mustardy. I use a Gunpowder mustard which is fantastic, and I swear by it for all things which need a hint (or more) of mustard.
He enjoyed it greatly despite his lurge, and I was left with mash, cabbage and a few carrots. Oh goody, thought I, bubble and squeak.
Today, however, he went into work, and came home exhausted. I didn’t have enough to simply serve bubble and squeak. Oh bugger, thought I, and rummaged through the fridge. Now, it just so happened that I’d bought a pack of black pudding slices, which I was originally going to serve with the belly pork, but I’d forgotten about it. And thus began the formation of a Cunning Plan.
I swiftly chopped up a leek and started cooking it off with some olive oil in a good frying pan, before flinging in the leftovers, and then boldly chopping up the black pudding into small bits. And I let it cook, and cook. Because I know he likes the brown crispy bits. And suddenly I realised the enormity of what I’d just created. Black pudding hash. I hadn’t even looked up the recipe – until I googled it just now, I’d not realised it existed! But..hey…internet, everything is out there in one form or another.
I was totally blown away by how easily it worked. It was great! And we both agreed it was a keeper, though next time I’ll likely throw the pudding into the pan first and go from there. But there’ll still be crispy brown bits. There HAS to be crispy brown bits!