Chicken stuffed with Black Pudding

Chicken Stuffed with Black Pudding © Kevin Ashton 2005 

*Here’s another recipe from my newspaper column, I hope you’ll try it.

Black pudding has re-emerged as a popular British dish in the last 10 years, and yet its versatility is still mainly untapped. Too often overcooked or of poor quality to do it justice. George Stafford in Derbyshire makes one of the best, but if you’re not lucky enough to live in Stanley Common then source your black pudding from a good local butcher. Don’t be afraid to ask for a sample to taste, particularly if you’re a regular customer.

Ingredients (serves 2)
2x 175-gram chicken breasts (skin on)
10 grams tarragon
100 grams quality black pudding
4 large pitted prunes
200 ml chicken stock
125 ml whipping cream
1.5 teaspoon grain mustard
10 lightly toasted walnut halves
1 Tbsp olive oil

  1. Remove the fillets from the chicken breasts & place between two pieces of cling film.
  2. Use a rolling pin or meat hammer to gently bat out the fillets until they are double in size, set aside.
  3. Trim off approximately 20 grams (3/4 oz) of meat from the sides of each breast, whilst keeping its original shape.
  4. Roughly cut up the black pudding removing the skin and put the chunks into a food processor, add the prunes and puree until smooth.
  5. Pour in 25 ml of whipping cream, the chicken meat you have trimmed from each breast and mix for a further 2-3 minutes.
  6. Remove the tarragon leaves from the branches and reserve 3/4 for the sauce.  Finely chop the remaining 1/4 and stir into the black pudding stuffing, then season with salt and black pepper.
  7. Carefully cut a 10 cm (3.75 inches) pocket or flap along the longest side of each breast. The pocket should go in about 5cm, but try to keep your knife flat so that you don’t cut a hole in the breast.
  8. Stuff each pocket with half of the mix (don’t worry if you have a little mix left you can always fry as a fritter alongside the breasts). Now place a flattened fillet over the edge to seal it, then refrigerate.
  9. Simmer the chicken stock down until it has reduced by half, then add the rest of the cream and the grain mustard and the reserved tarragon leaves and keep warm.
  10. Preheat the oven 190 C (gas mark 5) & season both sides of the chicken with salt & pepper.
  11. Heat a non-stick frying pan then add the olive oil and the chicken breasts and cook on a medium-high heat for 6-7 minutes, making sure both sides are golden brown.
  12. Transfer the chicken to the oven and cook for a further 7-8 minutes until cooked through.
  13. Allow the chicken breasts to rest on a warm plate, pour away some of the fat from the saute pan and then add the sauce to infuse with the chicken flavour.    Bring the sauce to a simmer and turn off the heat.

To Serve
Carefully slice each chicken breast into 2-3 and arrange on warm plates then pour some of the sauce around the plate and sprinkle on the walnuts.

Chef’s Tips
Any kind of green beans would go well with this dish and I like to boil a few diced baking potatoes with their skins on and a couple of garlic cloves in the water. Then drain well and mash with a little butter.

*It’s been pointed out to me that not everyone reading this will know what black pudding is so I am going to post a link below which will take readers to the free on-line encyclopaedia Wikipedia

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