I get a lot of slagging here in GIY about my love of breakfast, and I am loathe to add fuel to that particular fire. But, it is without question my favourite meal of the day, and I’ll get up early just to ensure I have enough time to cook it. This breakfast is packed with iron and protein in the form of fresh-blood black pudding, eggs and spinach. Though black pudding is a rich and easily absorbed source of iron, it’s on the fatty side – so you could perhaps leave it out mid-week and enjoy at the weekend. Always seek out a good quality pudding made from fresh blood as opposed to blood ‘powder’ – it really should have only a small handful of ingredients: blood, pork fat and meat, rice, oatmeal and seasoning. Inch House is an artisan black pudding made by Nora Ryan from Inch House in Thurles. It’s available from good retailers including Ardkeen in Waterford, Cavistons in Dublin and Country Choice in Nenagh.
Fry a little butter in a pan on a low heat and add the spinach stalks. Wilt gently until soft and then stack them in the corner of the pan. Add the slices of black pudding and fry for a few minutes on each side until browned and cooked through. Remove them and the spinach stalks to an oven to keep warm. Fry the slices of tomato for a minute or so on each side to brown slightly and then remove from the pan.
Meanwhile bring a saucepan of water to a rolling boil. Crack the eggs in and poach them as you like them. Pop some sourdough bread in the toaster. Back to the frying pan - add the spinach leaves. Season well with some sea salt and black pepper and grate a little fresh nutmeg on top. Keep turning the spinach in the pan - you want it to wilt gently as opposed to frying so add a little knob of butter or a few drops of water if you need to.
When the spinach is wilted it’s time to plate up – butter a slice of sourdough toast and them make a stack on top: a slice of black pudding, tomato, spinach stalks and leaves and top with a poached egg. Eat and enjoy.
Michael Kelly is a freelance journalist, author and founder of GIY.
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