What to do with blood pudding?
My potluck group last night decided that the next week's theme would be 'blood'. I missed the decision process and have no idea how they came to that conclusion as some of them are vegetarians, but they were talking about ingredients like blood oranges, beets, etc. I, of course, would like to do it proper, and bring in a blood sausage or pudding to make everyone squirm.
The only ones I can find in my town are Tommy Moloney products:
I've never had Irish blood pudding and have no idea what it tastes like or what the seasonings are like. Can anyone give me some hints? Also, I don't think it'd be very interesting to just slice it up and fry it - do you know of any preparations I can incorporate it in?
There's a fairly length article on blood pudding on Wikipedia, covering styles and uses around the world.
The reason for slicing and frying is that it enhances the texture. Texture, of course, depends a lot on the filling, but can be soft and uniform. Flavor can vary. I've had a Scandinavian version that was sweet with raisins, Korean with rice and mugbean noodles (served with a spicy dipping salt), and a more strongly flavored Mexican moronga.
I have seen Spanish recipes that call for morcilla, including the antithesis of vegetarian meal, the Cocido Madrilleno.
the different national variations are surprisingly different...
I'd suggest bringing blood pudding/blutwurst/black pudding primarily just as a squicky taste -- it's expensive, and quite likely to not be finished off. (I've eaten it in Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the UK, France, and Germany, and can now say I've given it a fair shake, and I really don't care for it.)
The only way I've ever enjoyed it was in Germany, where it was in a strange salad containing chopped pickles and was extremely refreshing on a crazy-hot day.
You might also consider SANGria -- named for its resemblance to blood.
I like it best sliced and fried also, even without the scallop. The Irish/UK variety kind of reminds me of liverwurst as far as the taste - and has so much oatmeal it's almost like a kind of liverwurst toast, if that makes sense. I like it myself but as with liverwurst a little bit goes a long way - it's very rich.
Assuming you're buying an Irish or British black pudding, then we usually eat it at breakfast, along with bacon, eggs and so on.
However, some recipe ideas from one of the producers near to me:
As specific ideas that we've tried, it works as a stuffing for chicken breast. I also like it as part of a "breakfast salad" - dressed leaves scattered with with fried black pud. and bacon (or pancetta) and halved quails eggs (or simply a poached egg which pretty much forms the dressing in itslef.